“Please can you kindly stop any other media campaign against Mallam Abba Kyari on Hajia Maryam Danna, since the Senate has restored it? It will do what is necessary in your case.
This was the call I received from a person close to Mallam Abba Kyari, the late chief of staff (CoS), to President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday 20 February 2020. The lord’s call came immediately after PRNigeria published a report. news. from another Senate resolution that day, for the immediate restoration of Mrs. Maryam Danna, of the Shuwa ethnic nationality of the state of Borno, such as Mr. Kyari.
Ms. Danna, a licensed accountant for the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC), was a respected informant who had exposed corrupt practices and other irregularities to the federal agency, for which some of her officials were disciplined. But instead of being rewarded for this act of patriotism, the government reabsorbed and promoted some of the previously suspended accused. They were transferred to higher levels in other government ministries, while they were arbitrarily fired without justification in July 2016.
Presented with facts, President Muhammadu Buhari ordered that the woman be readmitted to her position in the agency. In a note dated 25 October 2016, the Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), wrote to Mr. Kyari, indicating the President’s decision. Nothing happened. Through the promotion, some important non-governmental organizations, together with the local and foreign media, presented arguments for the restoration of Ms. Danna to her functions at the NDPHC, through their main reports, which unfortunately did not work. .
The 8th Senate of the Federal Republic, under the leadership of Senator Bukola Saraki, passed a resolution on May 3, 2018, ordering the immediate removal of Maryam Danna from her position as NDPHC Director General (Audit and Compliance), but the power -this- presiding refused to surrender. The recent decision by federal legislators therefore came 22 months after the resolution.
PRNigeria has published reports and opinion articles on Ms. Danna’s plight, which was initially thought to be a conspiracy between Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and former Federation government secretary Babachir Lawal. However, he later realized that the money in question stopped at the desk of the president’s chief of staff.
The caller who had made sure Ms. Danna was restored to her position at the NDPHC later claimed that the roles of Mr. Kyari on various issues have been wrongly misinterpreted by the media and, as such, have been seriously misinterpreted by the public. He described the CoS as a very humble, reliable, workaholic, loyal, generous, intelligent, and deterred Nigerian who had good intentions for the country.
In expressing my reservation to some of the superlatives used to describe the late CoS, I reminded the caller of the difficult situation of Ms. Danna displaced from her job for more than four years and also the well-known struggles of Mr. Kyari with other influential personalities in the government.
I mentioned his widely publicized rift with First Lady Aisha Buhari, presumably for a ministerial appointment; his heated dispute in the Federal Executive Council Chamber with the former Chief of Service, Ms. Winifred Oyo-Ita, on the surreptitious restoration of the accused retired criminal, Abdulrasheed Maina; his tug of war with the national security adviser, Babagana Monguno, on the coordination of national security architecture and; his allegedly conflicting views with Vice-President Osinbajo on Ruga cattle settlements and other projects. This sparked a federal legislator’s claim that Kyari was “more powerful” than the vice president.
The caller replied that the scenarios listed were simply imaginary divisions created and promoted by the political opposition to tarnish the reputation of the CoS, which he described as sincere and incorruptible. I told him that a reputation is a person’s general belief based on social evaluation and other credentials. I therefore asked if the caller was aware of the malicious media reports of Mr. Kyari’s reputation, which were not refuted through factual counter-reviews or discredited through more credible arguments.
I also cited the alleged corruption of N500 million, which is said to have been handed over to him by the telecommunications company MTN; the fraud reported by his citizen, named Bako Waziri Kyari, of a bribe of N29 million naira for a contract; and the alleged mistreatment of a police officer, DSP Tijjani Bulama, for intervening in the difficult situation of Bako Kyari to recover his money. Most of these allegations were made live on television on the popular Brekete Human Rights radio in Abuja.
The caller stammered out an answer that Mr. Kyari was a gentleman, who is tolerant of criticism, adding that no matter how much the CoS had been defamed, media denigration would not change Mr. Kyari. For him, most of the accusations were false and false news sponsored by those of the opposition. Understanding the bitter change his mood had, I refrained from continuing to engage the caller for CoS’s reputation, nor did I bother to inform him that some of the leaked official documents tarnished Mr. Kyari’s reputation. they came from members of his party.
For example, in 2016, a memo from the Kaduna governor Nasir El-Rufai was released to President Buhari. Mr. Rufai accused Mr. Kyari of “having no idea of the PCA and its internal policy”. In another note leaked the following year, 2017, the then Minister of State for Oil Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, blamed Mr. Kyari for preventing him from seeing the President on matters related to his ministry. Additionally, in a leaked report sent to the House of Representatives National Security and Intelligence Committee in 2018, former NIA Chief Ambassador Mohammed Dauda made serious accusations against the CoS.
Finally, the caller agreed that the President’s Chief of Staff’s office required serious reputation management to correct misperceptions about his duties and the director, through the public provision of facts relating to a number of issues. . The caller also promised to make an appointment for PRNigeria to have an audience with the Chief of Staff, after he could perfect Mrs. Maryam Danna’s restoration to her duties.
Reputation management, a public relations act, is a deliberate effort to shape public perception by influencing positive changes in attitude and behavior in an organization or system, when necessary, to regain due respect, trust and sponsorship. Such a restored reputation would be measured accordingly by the subsequent nature and professionalism of the office and its managers in the future.
Although the National Assembly’s upper legislative chamber sent a letter in March 2020 to the secretary of the Federation government, Chief Mustapha, inviting him to head the CEO of the NDPHC to comply and implement his resolution on the case of Ms Danna, I doubt that CoS was officially reported before being hospitalized and, unfortunately, died of coronavirus.
There is an urgent need for public officials to be aware of the need to positively manage their reputation by monitoring and understanding the reasons behind the public’s misconception about their roles and activities in government. They should begin to respond promptly and responsibly to public concerns, including false reports, false news reports and unfounded allegations about them and their actions. If necessary, a crisis communication plan is essential for managing any unpleasant developments around these officials and their offices thereafter.
When I read some of the brilliant tributes written by Mallam Abba Kyari’s family, friends and colleagues after his death, albeit late, it seems that I am now convinced that I believe the former chief of staff was a good man, detribalized and perhaps ill Nigerian connoisseur.