Nigeria’s President fires nine ministers linked to political rivals

By bne IntelliNews September 12, 2013

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan has fired nine of his 42 ministers in a government reshuffle, Leadership reported. This is his first major reorganisation of the cabinet since winning the April 2011 elections.

Information Minister Labaran Maku, who announced the changes, said the cabinet reshuffle had nothing to do with the crisis in the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP), but the President wanted to “inject new blood into his cabinet” and to “re-focus government for greater service delivery to the Nigerian public”. However, according to local political analysts, the reshuffle is related to the serious divisions within PDP, as fractions are jockeying for power ahead of the 2015 elections.

weeks ago seven of the country's powerful state governors and Vice-President Atiku Abubakar formed a splinter group in the PDP that opposed to Jonathan. PDP has won every national election since the end of military rule in 1999, so the party's presidential candidate would be in a strong position to become Nigeria's next leader, writes BBC.

The cabinet reshuffle did not affect the most closely monitored by foreign investors posts of the finance and oil ministers. The ministers that were sacked include the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Minister of Environment, the Minister of Education, the Minister of Lands Housing and Urban Development, the Minister of Science and Technology, the Minister of National Planning, the Minister of State for Defence, the Minister of State for Power, and the Minister of State for Agriculture. The names of the new ministers will be announced later.

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