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Buhari aides ‘clash’ over sacking of Osinbajo’s staff

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A top aide of President Muhammadu Buhari has reportedly clashed with a top official of the Federal Government over the sudden decision to sack some aides of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

It was gathered that the sack of Osinbajo’s staff was not approved by President Buhari before his vacation to the United Kingdom.

Naija News had reported the sack of 35 aides from the Office of the Vice President despite not issuing any of them a query.

Among those affected are senior special assistants, special assistants, personal assistants, technical assistants, and some whose appointments were approved in August.

Daily Trust on Thursday revealed the identities and positions of the aides affected by the sack order.

Furthermore, it has now been gathered that Vice President Osinbajo has retrieved the sack letters from the affected aides pending the return of President Buhari to Nigeria after the letters were issued to them through the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF).

The obtained list includes Ajibola Ajayi, the daughter of former governor of Oyo state, Isiaka Abiola Ajimobi. She was appointed Special Assistant, Legal to the President (VP’s office) in August 2019. She also previously served as a SA to the President on Bureau of Public Enterprises, BPE (VP’s office) from October 2015 to May 2019.

It was gathered that the current move against Osinbajo by the top aide of the President was in response to last weekend’s perceived vote of confidence passed on the embattled Vice President by the Emir of Daura, Alhaji Umar Faruk Umar.

An informed source hinted that while the President had already “personally approved the appointment of all the 35 aides reportedly disengaged, he had also instructed their deployment to other ministries as part of a reorganization of the presidency proposed to him by the same top aide, who is seen to be engaging Osinbajo in a power tussle.

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“While the Emir of Daura, His Royal Highness, Alhaji Umar Faruk Umar had spoken so highly of Osinbajo at the installation ceremony of the President’s cousin, Musa Haro as the new Dan-Madamin of Daura last Saturday, the top aide to the President was present and was pissed.

“The Emir’s effusive praise of Osinbajo at the event on his loyalty to the president and commitment to project Nigeria was seen as a deliberate attempt by the Emir to smite the so-called head of Aso Villa cabal and rubbish all they have been doing to curtail and humiliate the VP in an attempt to orchestrate a tussle between the President and his Vice,” the source told Daily Post.

The source revealed that Buhari had approved Osinbajo’s aides to stay in the Presidential Villa and those to be posted to Ministries before travelling out of Nigeria.

“The President had already approved all the aides of the VP and stipulated those to be in the villa, and those to be in the ministries. But by Monday, two days after the Emir of Daura praised the Vice President’s loyalty and service, the top aide, behind this whole problem ensured that all the aides deployed to the ministries should be disengaged,” the source said.

According to Daily Post, the top government official was told it was Buhari who made the decision to relieve the aides, thereby, causing confusion and raising doubts about such a claim, since it was the same President that approved all the presidential aides in the office of the Vice President before travelling.

However, checks revealed that official correspondence from the President’s office specified that Buhari had approved all his deployments only a few weeks ago.