Co-founder of BudgIT, Seun Onigbinde, has finally bowed to pressure and resigned as the Technical Adviser to the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Clem Agba.
He made this announcement on his Medium page, a link of which he shared on his official Twitter handle. His resignation comes a day after members of the Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) kicked against his appointment, calling him “an imbalanced caustic denigrator of the government of President Buhari”.
Onigbinde, in his post on Monday, said: “Upon further reflections on the furore that has been generated by my new role as the Technical Adviser to the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, I humbly resign the appointment.”
He thanked the Honourable Minister, Prince Clem Ikanade Agba, for believing in my expertise and the privilege to serve.
He said, “I am very grateful to the Honourable Minister, Prince Clem Ikanade Agba, for believing in my expertise and I also thank everyone who sent his or her congratulations to me in the short period. I have also been humbled by the faith and belief that numerous persons have expressed in me.
“My sincere interest is to see a Nigeria that grows and optimises resources for the benefits of all Nigerians.
“My loyalty to the good cause of our nation, Nigeria compelled me to accept the call to provide technical skills and this experience has more than strengthened it.
“I also want to wish the Nigerian Government, led by President Muhammadu Buhari, well. I will always be of help to the federal government in my capacity as the Director of BudgIT, a critical fiscal transparency group, as I have been to several agencies. I would also work to ensure that BudgIT continues to build civic awareness on the right of every Nigerian to know how public resources are managed.”
Since his appointment, supporters of President Buhari and the All progressives Congress (APC) have been kicking against his inclusion in government he had criticised severally.
On Sunday, the BMO said the appointment was a travesty that desecrates the characters of honour and integrity which are the hallmarks of President Muhammadu Buhari and those who are called to serve in his government.
In a statement signed by Niyi Akinsiju and Cassidy Madueke, BMO’s Chairman and Secretary respectively, the group wondered how “an imbalanced caustic denigrator of the government of President Buhari would be called to serve in the same administration he had described in the most unpalatable terms.
“Seun Onigbinde lacks honour and integrity, which are characters known of President Buhari, and thus could not be in the same team with him.
“He has severally described the President with the most distasteful terms, and has shown, especially on social media, that he sees nothing good in the administration of President Buhari.
“Onigbinde had also gone to the shameful extent of describing those who support the President and his administration as ‘ethnic jingoists’. He once referred to the President as ‘incompetent’, and accused him of being a dictator committing illegality.
“We cannot but wonder that this same man accepted an appointment to serve in this same administration he has described in the most odious terms. It shows he lacks honour.
“He perhaps was browbeating all the while so he could achieve some notice and be sneaked in at night into the same government he publicly threw invectives at”.
BMO added that Mr Onigbinde lacked decency and morality to reject the said appointment if indeed he believed in those insults he had publicly hurled at Buhari and his administration.
“We believe that a man must stand for something, and live by it. If Seun was called by anyone to take an appointment in a government he ridiculed and called illegal and dictatorial, he should have turned it down, if he had any decency or morals.
“Does he now want to serve in this same government and become part of what he had called an illegality and dictatorship?” the group asked.
“He went as far as deleting his Twitter account so that his ridiculous and denigrating posts against the President Buhari administration would not be recalled. That is enough evidence of Seun Onigbinde’s lack of character.
The group also called on the All Progressives Congress (APC) as a party, to reject the appointment of Seun Onigbinde and call for his ouster from the government.
It said: “There are countless supporters of the President who have more powerful backgrounds and records, who are better qualified, and who would offer better professional and intellectual support to the attainment of the President’s ideals and goals, which they believe in – which Seun has said he does not.
“These the ones the government should engage, not imbalanced critics with unstable morality.
“We do not expect a man to rain curses at the conductor of an orchestra for the music he is playing, and yet still seek to play an instrument in that same orchestra. That is a travesty of integrity. It must not stand.”