Femi Ajayi, Sani Ndanusa, and Remi Babalola, were public office holders at different times and were in the limelight, however, after they let office it is not clear where these former public office holders are. ELEOJO IDACHABA asks: where are they now?
Olufemi Ajayi was Executive Secretary, Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF) until 2015. He was appointed by former President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan in 2014 to replace Oluwola Oluleye the erstwhile PTDF executive secretary.
Ajayi, was the Director General, National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) prior to his appointment as PTDF executive secretary.
The Ekiti state-born technocrat, who headed the Fund with the mandate of training local manpower for the oil and gas industry, while overseeing the affairs of the agency was forced with the unenviable task of explaining to Nigeria why the scholarship scheme the agency sponsored to train Nigerian youths and researchers was cancelled in 2015.
While explaining the true position of things, he said, “The PTDF has not cancelled the scheme. The point I have made is that as much as possible, we want to increase capacity-building locally here and because of that even our training partners, we have told them that going forward, people that we would be favourably disposed to are those partners who are ready to encourage our domestication drive. We are asking them to come and set up shops in our country here to do what they are doing for us over there here.”
According to him, cancelling the scheme is not likely to ever happen because of the importance of encouraging interaction.
“In fact, we are not likely to be able to cancel it outright because don’t forget, there is a need for intellectual interaction and diffusion even within the country. If you bring scholars who were trained in the US, Germany and the ones that were trained in the UK, the mix is the best you can have and the better for you because we are combining the expertise from so many places,” he explained.
Not much is known about his whereabouts long after he left PTDF.
Dr Aderemi Babalola was the Minister of State for Finance in 2007. He was appointed by the late President Umaru Musa Yar Adua.
It is on record that Babalola was the first minister that publicly declared his assets in line with extant public service rules.
Late in 2008, he combined his duties as the Minister of Finance with that of the Minister of FCT, briefly, following the removal of his contemporary from office.
Prior to his appointment as minister in 2007, he had carved a niche for himself in the banking industry, where he occupied management positions in Zenith Bank and First Banks, respectively.
However, he began to have problem in the cabinet following his disclosure in 2010 that the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) was broke, a claim that was refuted by the corporation in a statement by its spokesperson, the late Levi Ajuonuma. “We cannot be classified as insolvent when we have healthy cash flow and we can pay for our crude and product import obligations,” Ajuonuma had stated.
Subsequently, Babalola was deployed to the Ministry of Special Duties, however, he refused to resume in his new place of deployment and resigned.
Blueprint checks information has it that his stint at the Ministry of Finance was marked by focuse on improving the public expenditure management framework that led to the institution of checks on irregular deduction from source of funds as well as from provincial and municipal government’s statutory allocations.
In 2009, shortly before he left the cabinet, he helped to raise the $1million dollars to build a state-of-the-art clinic, the Remi Babalola Red Cross Medical Centre for the Nigerian Red Cross Society in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital.
Reports have it that the facility has since supported the delivery of primary healthcare services in that ancient city.
Since Babalola left the cabinet, there has not been much news about him.
He was the Minister of Youths, Sports and Social Development under the late President Umaru Musa Yar Adua.He was appointed in 2008 but was removed from office in 2010 in a major cabinet reshuffle. Ndanusa prior to his appointment as minister had served as a Commissioner for Transport and Social Development.
As a sports lover and enthusiast he was at one time the Vice President, Nigeria Tennis Federation for four years before he assumed the position of president of the federation in 2001.
Ndanusa was elected the Vice President, Confederation of Africa Tennis in April 2003 and re-elected in 2007. Within the same period, he was also the Vice President, Nigeria 2008 Olympic Committee.
In November 2009, while he was still minister, there was controversy following which Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC) disqualified him from the being elected president of the NOC. Undaunted by this, in December 2009, he vowed that Nigeria would put up the best performance at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in India.
As President, Wheel Chair Tennis in Africa, he rooted for wheel chair tennis as a veritable sport in the country.
He once said, “The wheelchair tennis is growing, but the growth is rather slow; we are however working very hard. We have one of the biggest wheelchair tennis teams in Africa, they are very well-tested.
“We have opportunities from CBN and other sponsors to bring in some tournaments. Last year, we had futures, one here in Nigeria. I’m on the board of the ITF Wheelchair Tennis and I’m also the African President of the Wheelchair Tennis. I’m working very hard to see that wheelchair tennis is positioned properly in Nigeria.”
Not much information is available on his life after leaving office.