By Femi Salako
In a swift succession of events that commenced on August 20, 2023, Hon. Dr. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo embarked on a remarkable journey that is poised to reshape the Ministry of Interior and elevate its role in securing the nation’s well-being. As he transitioned from his esteemed position in the National Assembly to assume the role of Minister of Interior under President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration, he exhibited a level of passion and readiness that has captured the nation’s attention.
Monday, August 21, 2023, marked the commencement of a new chapter as Hon. Dr. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo was officially sworn in as the Minister of Interior by President Tinubu. This marked a turning point, signifying his deep commitment to the #RenewedHope agenda.
The very next day, August 22, 2023, Minister Tunji-Ojo held his first pivotal meeting with the heads of agencies under the Ministry’s supervision. With an unwavering commitment to President Tinubu’s vision of ensuring the security and protection of Nigerian citizens, the meeting laid a foundation for collaborative efforts. Notable attendees included the Controller General of Corrections, Haliru Nababa; the Acting Comptroller General of Immigration, Adepoju Carol Wura-Ola; the Controller General of the Federal Fire Service, Abdulganiyu Jaji; and the Commandant General of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Ahmed Audi.
His week continued with an unyielding focus on utilizing technology to fortify the nation’s extensive borders, emphasizing the government’s dedication to securing its citizens.
On Thursday, August 24, 2023, the Minister unveiled his official portrait, inspiring the ministry’s staff to maintain their diligence across their various roles. This act underscored his commitment to promoting a work environment founded on excellence.
The week reached its zenith with a productive session on Friday, August 25, 2023, where Minister Tunji-Ojo met with civil service staff under the Ministry. The purpose was to jointly brainstorm ideas to expedite the Ministry’s progress.
Monday, August 28, 2023, witnessed Hon. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo’s active participation in the inaugural Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting, where President Tinubu reiterated strategic priorities to accomplish the #RenewedHope agenda. As the Minister of Interior, he wholeheartedly pledged his commitment to these directives.
On Wednesday, August 29, 2023, the Minister met with the Acting Comptroller General of the Nigeria Immigration Service, Adepoju Carol Wura-Ola, and the Controller General of the Nigerian Correctional Service, Haliru Nababa, to discuss their challenges. Recognizing their pivotal roles in safeguarding national sovereignty, he championed a vision to eliminate passport queue bottlenecks and transform correctional homes into centers of rehabilitation rather than condemnation.
On Thursday, August 30, 2023, Hon. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo continued his engagement with agencies under the Ministry of Interior, further solidifying his commitment to their collective success. He culminated this week of intense engagement with a tour of the Headquarters of the Nigeria Immigration Service, the correctional service facilities in Airport Road, and Kuje.
On Thursday, 31st of August, the minister played met with the Controller General, Federal Service, Engr. Jaji O Adulganiyu, at the service’ headquarters in Abuja where he reiterated his commitment to ensuring that the agency is built and well equipped for optimal service delivery.
Within a week in office, Tunji-Ojo has not only started working, he has successfully sent a message out to all Nigerians that it won’t be business as usual.
He has set the ball rolling for an holistic transformation of the ministry, where Nigerians passports will not be made inaccessible or too expensive for Nigerians to acquire, when our correctional services will be duly transformed, the borders will be effectively secured and the fire service will live up to its expectations.
He has continued to show boldness, to show courage and it’s exciting to see that he carries the fire and passion and more importantly, the credentials to succeed in this new role.
Hon. Dr. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo has emerged as a visionary Minister, poised to usher in an era of transformation within the Ministry of Interior. His passion, readiness, and proactive approach demonstrate his unwavering commitment to President Tinubu’s #RenewedHope agenda. His engagement with agencies under his purview signals a new dawn for the Ministry, underpinned by a dedication to excellence and the collective determination to deliver on the nation’s mandate.
As we look ahead, it is clear that Minister Tunji-Ojo’s leadership will not only prepare the Ministry for productive years but also lay the foundation for a safer, more secure, and prosperous Nigeria for all.