President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday conferred national honours to 449 Nigerians and friends of Nigeria.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and the President’s Chief of Staff Ibrahim Gambari were also in attendance at the event which was held in Abuja.
Babatunde Fashola, SAN, was awarded the National Honours Award of the Commander of the Order of the Niger(CON).
The awardees include the President’s late Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari; Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State; Director General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala; Registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Ishaq Oloyede; the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola; Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State amongst others.
Others were awarded the Grand Commander of the Order of the Niger (GCON), Commander of the Order of the Federal Republic (CFR), and Commander of the Order of the Niger (CON).
Recall that the final list of candidates for national honors was made public by the federal government Sunday by the federal ministry of special duties and intergovernmental affairs in major publications nationwide.
The National Honours are a set of orders and decorations conferred upon Nigerians and allies of Nigeria every year. They were instituted by the National Honors Act No. 5 of 1964, during the First Nigerian Republic, to honour Nigerians who have rendered service to the benefit of the nation and its people.
A total of 437 people were nominated by the federal government to receive national honours last weekend, according to a list that was leaked.
There were numerous inconsistencies, mistakes, and noticeable omissions on the leaked list, which the governemnt later came out to disown.
Compared to the 437 people on the leaked list, 449 people were nominated for national honours in the final list.
The previous president of the United Nations General Assembly, UNGA, Tijani Muhammad-Bande, is one of the individuals being recognized with a GCON.
The name of the former diplomat was missing from the previous list.
Furthermore, the duo of Ekiti Governor Kayode Fayemi and the former Senate President Bukola Saraki were excluded from the new list.
Noteworthy is the appearance of 11 serving Governors and nine Ministers including Governors Ifeanyi Okowa, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, Rotimi Akeredolu, and Nasir El-Rufai to name a few.