Nigeria’s immediate past President Goodluck Jonathan says no Nigerian leader till date has been able to assemble “a star-studded” cabinet as he did while in office.
Jonathan believed his cabinet was full of achievers and people who he said got to the top of their chosen fields based on merit.
The former President said this in his book, ‘My Transition Hours’, which was presented to the public in Abuja on Tuesday.
Jonathan said while he could not assess himself, he could beat his chest for those who worked with him.
The PDP chieftain explained that apart from his ministers, all those who served with him in different capacities were also doing well on the global stage.
Jonathan stated, “Sometimes I laugh when certain propagandists attempt to stand logic on its head by maligning my administration as one bereft of ideas and ‘clueless’.
“In assessing my administration, it is best to focus on facts. I cannot assess myself. I leave that to history. But I can assess my cabinet and I make bold to say that never in the history of Nigeria, till date, has the nation had such a star-studded cabinet, full of achievers and people who got to the top of their chosen fields by merit.
“Just consider that my Minister of State for Health, Dr. Muhammed Ali Pate, is now a professor at America’s Duke University as well as Senior Adviser to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation based in Washington DC.
“My Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina, is now the President of the African Development Bank.
“My Coordinating Minister, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, is the chairperson of the Board of the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation and the African Risk Capacity.
“She also sits on the board of Twitter and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, just as she is a Senior Adviser at Lazard and a Director at Standard Chartered Plc in the United Kingdom, amongst others.
“My Minister of Communication Technology, Dr. Omolola Johnson, is currently Chairperson of Custodian and Allied Insurance Limited as well as the Global Alliance for Affordable Internet.”
The ex-president added, “It is not just members of my cabinet. Others, who served with me in different capacities, are also soaring on the world stage. A good example is Ms Arunma Oteh, who I appointed the Director-General of the Securities and Exchange Commission.
“Under her steady and skillful direction, Nigeria’s equity market grew in geometric proportions, and by the time I left office in 2015, the market had tripled in size to $10bn in value.
“Two months after I left office, Ms. Oteh was appointed a Vice President and Treasurer at the World Bank.”
The former President said with such personalities in his cabinet, no one could factually say he and his men were ‘clueless’ or inept.
Jonathan described what he called the evidence of performance under his administration as “simply overwhelming.”
Looking back, the former Nigerian President said he had a sense of fulfilment.
He stated, “I have served Nigeria with all my strength and God alone is the judge of the universe.
“I certainly hope that all those who cast aspersions at us can say the same about themselves because the end of a matter is better than its beginning.
“I had no enemies to fight; I have none still.”