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Dr Ibe Kachikwu

…As it commends Kachikwu’s ’20 Fixes’ at NNPC


UGO AMADI, with Agency report

Amid improving market sentiment and a weakening dollar, the World Bank is raising its 2016 forecast for crude oil prices to $41 per barrel from $37 per barrel in its latest Commodity Markets Outlook, as an oversupply in markets is expected to recede.

The National Vice Chairman, South South of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Prince Hilliard Eta has called on the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu to resign from his position over the recent comment he made with respect to the lingering fuel scarcity in the country.

According to a statement issued in Abuja on Sunday, Eta said the Minister’s comment is a clear indication that he was incapable of running the ministry assigned to him and unable to provide workable solution to the current fuel scarcity in the country.

The APC Chieftain said it was time Kachikwu descended from “his high horse to face squarely the duties required of him by his office, as responsibility to the people is one of the cardinal points of the APC, which he professes membership.”

The party while stating that it stands by its National leader, Ahmed Tinubu who took a swipe at the Minister over the weekend said, “Kachikwu has not entirely cast off the orientation of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP where he was, adding that such is still manifesting in his actions and utterances such as the recent one that attracted contempt from many Nigerians.”

“In the light of the foregoing, Mr. Kachikwu must not be a cog in the wheel of progress and he should do the needful by resigning honourably if he is not capable of doing his part by efficiently running the ministry assigned to him.”

“It is important to reiterate here that winning the federal election in 2015 has not eroded the core ideology of progressivism, which we espouse as it is the very foundation on which the party rests.

“This progressive ideology strongly emphasises government as a tool for service to the people, who are the custodians of power in the first instance. In line with this, it is not wrong or out of place for Tinubu to call the Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu to order owing to the anti progressive statements he made in the Presidential Villa on Wednesday March 23, 2016, while fielding questions from Journalists on the persisting scarcity of petrol.

“Secondly, we in the APC believe that it is proper to immediately correct mistakes or errors committed by any member of the party, no matter how highly placed and we are developing a culture of accountability to Nigerians that government is meant to serve.

“From this perspective, it is, therefore, understandable that Kachikwu’s statement to the effect that he has no solution to petrol scarcity bedevilling the country drew flaks from Tinubu and this does not, in any way imply that there is a crack within the party.

“In African culture, it is seen as irresponsible for an elder to watch a youngsters or an inexpensive person blunder without immediately calling him to order.”

Meanwhile, the Presidency has risen in stout defence of the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, who came under scathing criticism by the APC National leader Bola Ahmed Tinubu for saying he is no magician to immediately solve the country’s fuel scarcity issue.

Speaking Channels Television programme titled: “Sunday Politics,” the presidential spokesman, Mr Femi Adesina said that the minister should not be crucified for telling Nigerians the truth.

In a related development, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has attacked Tinubu for criticizing Kachikwu for his poor handling of the lingering fuel scarcity in the country.

Tinubu, in a widely reported statement on Sunday, had asked the minister to apologise to Nigerians for saying he was not a magician in bringing to an end, the fuel crisis.

However, PDP Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Abdullahi Jalo, said Tinubu lacks the moral right to criticise the minister knowing the role he played in the emergence of the APC-led Federal Government.

“If there is anybody that can condemn Kachikwu in this country it is not Bola Tinubu, knowing the antecedents and record of Bola Tinubu who was Lagos State governor.‎ We need a credible person to do that,” the party added.

The PDP also faulted the minister.

“It is wrong for him to say he is not a magician‎, it is equally bad for him as a minister to allow fuel scarcity to linger for a long time. We have the means, the government is mapping out a lot of money from looters and other sources. So what went wrong?” PDP asked.

A coalition of civil society groups, Civil Society Coalition for Positive Change and Stand Up for Nigeria (SUN) have issued a 72 hours ultimatum to the Minister of State for Petroleum and NNPC GMD, Dr Ibe Kachikwu to resign from office over the prolonged scarcity of fuel which it said has brought Nigerians severe hardship.
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