A group known as Concerned Nigerian Stakeholders has dismissed claims by the Executive Director of the Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), Auwal Rafsanjani, that Festus Keyamo does not have the right temperament for the office of Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development.
It said in a statement signed by its National Coordinator, Oluwasegun Oyewo that Rafsanjani was simply out to unnecessarily tarnish the image of the minister.
The group argued that Keyamo had no history of what the CISLAC boss suggested in his previous stints as ministers in tougher assignments.
” We are particularly concerned that a civil society activist who claims to be Barrister Festus Keyamo’s ‘comrade’ in activism could describe him as a hot tempered person whose actions could create chaos in the aviation industry.
“As a group of individuals who have been following Keyamo’s trajectory in social and legal activism as well as his recent foray into public office as minister under former President Muhammadu Buhari, we have been wondering what the oddly named Rafsanjani means with his suggestions that the minister does not have a stable mind.
“This is because there is no record of what he alluded to in Keyamo’s rich history of activism which Rafsanjani,as a one time student activist, could only dream of.
“It is also public knowledge that as Minister of state for Labour and Employment, Keyamo had always been a key figure in negotiations with Organized Labour which more often than not went deep into the night and there was no record of any altercation between him and any member of the Labour team.
“So we are at a loss as to why Rafsanjani feels that Keyamo does not have the temperament and a strong character to succeed as the Aviation Minister,” it said.
Concerned Nigerian Stakeholders added that Rafsanjani and CISLAC are however known to have made criticism of the ruling party and its members a regular past time.
The group said: “We have noticed that Rafsanjani, as CISLAC head, has a history of condemning any action of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) from the Buhari years up till few days ago when he issued a bland statement criticising the Bola Tinubu cabinet as a gathering of ex-governors and ex-ministers when indeed they are more people in the cabinet that have neither been governors nor minister before.
“We make bold to say that Barrister Festus Keyamo is eminently qualified to be the minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development and we dare say he will succeed in his role.
“As Aviation minister, what is expected from the occupant of that position is that he provides strategic leadership, policy formulation & implementation and also executes decisions in conjunction with other ministries that are aligned with the objectives of the President.
These are things which Keyamo has the skillset for.
“Let us also add that his rich legal background would be needed when it comes to creating agreements that should be beneficial to the aviation sector and by extension, the country.”
The group noted that it was convinced that Rafsanjani’s tirade against Keyamo was borne out of envy especially as he confirmed that they were once colleagues in social activism.