By Patience Danjuma
Members of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has charged the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu to tender an apology over the leakage of the memo he wrote to President Muhammadu Buhari, stressing that the action belittled the integrity status of the Group Managing Director of Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) as well as that of the current administration.
The request is coming despite denials by Kachikwu that he was not responsible for the leakage of the letter to the media.
A statement by the National Secretary of IPMAN, Danladi Garba Pasali made available to newsmen over the weekend described recent media reports that Dr Kachikwu and Baru both agreed that an autonomous NNPC and other regulators like the Department of Petroleum Resources will enable the progress of the oil and gas industry as a welcome development.
Part of the statement reads, “In the report, the minister was quoted to have said at the Nigeria Economic Summit 2017 in Abuja that he is currently ‘whittling down the powers of the minister’s office in the on-going reforms of the industry so that these institutions could work and work well, the reality is that no one will work as a minister forever, you are going to hand over that portfolio’”.
The association therefore submitted thus, “We expect the minister to start by showing example to publicly apologise over his leaked letter which nearly brought down the integrity of the GMD NNPC, the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari and the current petroleum sector.
“His apology is necessary in order to clear the minds of many uninformed and some mischievous elements who are still insisting on the wrong impression of massive corruption by the Maikanti Baru led administration as alleged in Kachikwu’s letter to the President.”
The minister’s statement that the autonomy of the oil and gas agencies “is very, very key with less of political interface” is a great confession that his allegation of Dr Baru’s insubordination is wrong and unwarranted, IPMAN insisted.
“Our memories are still fresh of the massive corruption and mismanagement that nearly destroy the Nigerian Oil and Gas industry under the supervision of the former minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Alison – Madueke due to her enormous power.”
“We therefore called on the minister and the GMD to shield their swords and work to gather for the benefits of the oil and gas industry,” IPMAN submitted.
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