Minister, special adviser resign

By The Rainbow

PRESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan has accepted the voluntary resignation of the Minister of State for Health, Dr Mohammed Pate.

His next port of call: Duke University's Global Health Institute, where he has been appointed a professor.

He has also been selected as  an adviser to the Bill and Melinda Foundation in the United States of America.

In a letter dated July 22, 2013, which explained why he had to leave the cabinet with effect from July 24, 2013, he offered to continue to serve the administration on part-time basis as the chairman of the presidential task force on polio eradication and the public-private coalition for saving one million lives initiative.

He wrote,  'As we have discussed, I wish to offer the continuation of my service on part-time basis, if you agree, in fulfillment of my previous commitments to see to conclusion these important national priorities. This may entail an honorary advisory role reporting directly to you on the progress, at least on quarterly basis.'

Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Dr Reuben Abati, in reaction, told State House correspondents in Abuja, on Wednesday, that while accepting the minister's resignation, the president was happy that his star-studded cabinet was attracting global attention.

Jonathan, who he said saw the appointment as an advantage to the country, commended Pate for the integrity and competence he brought into the areas he had served the government in the last five years.

'The cabinet is full of very distinguished men and women;  people with not only national but also international recognition.

'The president congratulated the minister and accepted his offer to continue to serve on a part-time basis as honorary adviser,' he said.

Reacting to the development, the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), in a release signed by its president, Dr Osahon Enabulele, expressed pain over the resignation of Pate, while it congratulated him on his new appointment.

It called on President Jonathan to appoint a competent replacement in his place.

Meanwhile, the Special Adviser to the President on Technical Matters and Member/Secretary, Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SURE-P) Committee, Akachukwu Sullivan Nwankpo, has also tendered his resignation to President Jonathan.

This, according to him, was to enable him to pursue his aspiration to become the governor of Anambra State in the forthcoming governorship election in the state.

President Jonathan accepted his resignation and wished him well in his future endeavour.