Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State says he is unapologetic over the memo he wrote to President Muhammadu Buhari, where he advocated that some reforms be made to save the country from further plunging into crisis.
It would be recalled that el-Rufai, in the 30-page document to Buhari published last week by an online medium, slammed the President’s chief of staff, Abba Kyari, and the secretary to the government of the federation, Babachir Lawal, among others, accusing them of lacking experience and selfishness.
Part of the letter read: “The secretary to the government of the federation and the chief of staff do not have experience in public service, lack humility in addition to being insensitive and rude to virtually most of the party leaders, ministers and governor.
“The chief of staff is totally clueless about the APC and its internal politics at best as he was neither part of its formation nor a participant in the primaries, campaign, and elections.
“In summary, neither of them has the personality, experience, and the reach to manage your politics nationally or even regionally.”
The governor said by failing to be proactive in taking key decisions in a timely manner, the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, has worsened the situation in Nigeria than it hitherto was.
The memo generated a heated controversy across the country, with a senator from Kaduna and fierce critic of el-Rufai, Shehu Sani, calling on the ruling party to sanction the governor
But reacting, el-Rufai, in an interview published by Daily Trust on Sunday, defended his decision to write the memo, disclosing that he knew document would be misinterpreted in some quarters before writing it.
He however, denied leaking it to the press, stressing that he had written about 20 of such letters in the past.
When asked if the letter has not caused a strain in his relationship with some of the people mentioned therein, he said: “I know Abba Kyari well, he will not disagree with what I wrote there. He knows it to be true and he is not hearing for the first time.
“Many people have complained about this, so I don’t think it will cause a strain in my relationship with the chief of staff because we have been friends for so many years. But anyone who feels he is upset because of what I have written, so be it.
“First of all, let me say that this is not the first memo that I have written to the president. From the time I began to interact politically with him since 2010, anytime I saw a situation requiring advice or change in direction, I usually went to discuss with him,” he said.
The Governor continued, “I always said, ‘I will go and reduce it to writing so you can have a document to reflect upon and decide and guide your action.
“This is not even the tenth memo I have written to the president. I have probably written more than 20 memos. I did this at various stages – from our days in the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), before the 2011 elections, after the 2011 elections, and during the merger process.
“I have always felt that my duty to him as my political leader is to pick up what he doesn’t hear, because as a lower level person, I get to hear more about what is going on. And if I see things going wrong, I have a duty to go to him and say, ‘This is what I’ve heard, the facts I have established and my advice on the way forward.
“They are all problem-solving memos, they identify the problems, analyse them and propose solutions. So this is the spirit of all my memoranda to the president from 2010 till date,” he was quoted as saying.