On Monday, October 30, 2023, President Bola Tinubu gave the State House security office instructions to prevent his son, Seyi Tinubu and other misbehaving individuals from interfering with a Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting that was in session.
The president particularly warned that such activities must stop immediately after observing Seyi and other unauthorised individuals scurrying in and out of the federal cabinet caucus, which meets weekly to address the most important topics of national concern.
“Last week, I noticed the undue access of people sneaking in and out of this council,” Mr Tinubu said as the executive council was called to order on Monday. “I saw the photograph of my son, Seyi, sitting behind the cubicle there. That is not acceptable.”
The president then made a list of aides who ought to be permitted to continue attending the meeting. He named Hakeem Muri-Okunola, the principal secretary; Damilotun Aderemi, the private secretary; Hadiza Usman, the policy adviser; and Bayo Onanuga, the information adviser.
“Those are people who are granted exception to be here when we’re conducting the business of the nation. Unless I sent for you, don’t come,” the president said.
The president asked the cabinet secretary George Akume to take note of the instruction.
“Unless your staff that are included, no one is privileged to have access sitting in this (Council Chambers), except those four that I’ve announced to you”, the president said.
The warning could severely undermine the overbearing influence and the illusion of access that Seyi Tinubu has been selling to the public since he followed his father to Abuja, even though he was never appointed to any position in the administration. Before his father’s inauguration as president on May 29, Seyi was an advertising executive in Lagos.
But he has been seen riding the president’s private jet and receiving credits for influencing government policies. Earlier this month, he was seen flying a presidential jet to Kano, a move that embarrassed both the president and other officials in the State House.
Those statutorily allowed into the federal executive council meeting include the vice president, all ministers, the cabinet secretary, the head of service, the national security adviser and the president’s special adviser on media.
Seyi is yet to comment on his father’s actions.