By; Jacob Onjewu Dickson
The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu may have fallen out of favour with the All Progressives Congress (APC) national leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, as the former Governor of Lagos State has taken a swipe at him for what he described as an uncalled for statement, when he said he was not trained as a magician and that Nigerians ought to commend the NNPC under him for efforts made at ensuring supply of petrol.
This was contained in a statement personally signed by Tinubu, made available to New Nigerian.
According to him, “Perhaps the statement by Kachikwu was made in a moment of unguarded frustration or was an awkward attempt at a joke. Whatever the motive, it was untimely and off-putting. The remark did not sit well with the Nigerian people; they were right to feel insulted as the Minister was wrong to have said such a thing.”
In the statement, Tinubu lamented that the current fuel shortage was unpleasant for the average Nigerian due to long hours spent on queues at fuel stations stressing that Nigerians’ livelihood and welfare was at stake.
“He spoke with the imperious nature of a member of the elitist government the people voted out last year and not the progressive one they voted in, but he must be reminded that he was not coerced to take this job. He accepted the job and its responsibilities knowingly.
“He also must remember that he does not own NNPC. This also is not a private company that owes nothing to the public except the duty of fair dealing because the seat he sits upon is owned by Nigerians not by him,” he said in the statement titled; ‘Kachukwu Needs to Know that Respect and Good Performance Will do What Magic Cannot’,
He warned Kachikwu of the consequences of not establishing a cordial relationship with Nigerians given the importance of his position, noting that Nigerians are uncomfortable and angry about his attitude.
“There may be no economic matter more difficult to unravel and more sensitive to the purse of the average person than the current fuel scarcity and I am confident of progress because I know the commitment of the President to resolving this matter,” he said.
While describing Kachikwu as the custodian of the NNPC, he noted that he committed an act of insubordination through his comments and advised him to refrain from such interjections in the future.
“For his policies and stint in office to be successful and a help to this government, he must have the support and belief of the people at this tough time, but he must talk to them in a way that they believe he seeks their best interest and understands the hardship weighing upon them.
The former governor disclosed that Nigeria requires creative reforms to overcome the past national economic policy, which is the basis for progressive democratic governance.