Pat Utomi Opens Up On His Role In President Buhari’s Cabinet

Professor Patrick Okedinachi Utomi has reacted to the reports that his name is written down for President Muhammadu Buhari’s cabinet.

Utomi said that he is not in a rush to go into government adding that he can only do that when he is sure of such administration and his role in it.

He noted this in an interview granted to the Vanguard in Lagos.

Professor said: “I am reading it as you have read it in the papers.

“My position is that citizenship has its obligations and duties.

‘Through the years, I have been a very passionate voice for change in the country. And it is purely based on principles, patriotic sense of where the country should be heading to.

“Over the years, I have also had some invitations to serve in public lives. I have served in government long ago. One of the things that it did for me, fortunately, I was very young, I am good.

“I could pick up something quickly and store them. And one of the decisions I made from that brief excursion into public life was that I should never allow myself to be in public life if I don’t have a sense that there will be enough of a critical mass to make the kind of difference that I believe in. Because of that, on a number of occasions, when I have been either invited or whatever, I have been very careful and honest with those who invited me to say that I am not in a rush to go into government.

“And that I can go into government only when I have certain sense for the nature of that government and my role in it and the clarity of the goal that government would be pursuing.

“This has earned me pressure of different kinds from friends who think I am not acting normal to those who appreciate the principle that I have adopted in business of considering public life.”

Meanwhile, Utomi showed satisfaction that Nigerians as a people have the sense that the time for change has come and took it.

“That is the most gratifying part for me. Many think that I represent that whole thing and think that I should work in that kind of environment. But honestly, it doesn’t make any difference to me inside or outside; I will support anything that will move the country forward in the direction of change,” he said.

“I take same attitude to the business of positioning government. It doesn’t make difference to me if I am serving outside or within, I will do what I have to do or need to do.”

“On the 100 days in office of Buhari and other governors, Utomi said, “I watched all the 100 days business; promises made and not made. It is irrelevant now whether promises were made or not. The important things are that there is enough to say that we have moved significantly from where we were before now.”

On federal government recent crusade against Boko Haram terrorists, Utomi added: “I am not a security expert. I cannot say we are winning the war or not. All I can say is that I see purpose and I hope that the purpose delivers the desired outcome.”

Utomi, a famous economist and former presidential candidate of the African Democratic Congress, had been reportedly screened by the DSS and the police.

He earlier showed his preparedness to work with the Buhari government if he is given the opportunity.