The appointment of a Minister of State for Petroleum Resources hailing from the oil-rich Niger Delta region has drawn criticism from the Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC).
Yabagi Sani, the National Chairman of IPAC, expressed his disapproval of the appointment during an appearance on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily breakfast program. He deemed the appointment to be sending the wrong message.
Sani argued that confining the selection of the minister to one particular region would foster a sense of entitlement among the Niger Delta populace. He emphasized that this perspective is counterproductive as it may undermine the efficiency of the appointed individuals.
He suggested that it’s imperative to alter this perception. To illustrate his point, Sani proposed that if there’s a desire for sensationalism in the appointment of a minister for a crucial sector like petroleum, it should be extended to areas like the Federal Capital Territory, rather than being confined to a single region.
He posed important questions about addressing the issue of crude oil theft, which he asserted is predominantly committed by individuals from the Niger Delta region. Sani advocated for approaching the petroleum sector from both a professional standpoint and a perspective that prioritizes national interests.
Sani stressed the gravity and significance of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources. He raised concerns about potential accountability and efficiency issues in combating crude oil theft if the president retains the responsibility of the ministry.
Expressing doubt about the effectiveness of the president personally supervising the ministry due to his already extensive responsibilities, Sani believed that such an important ministry required careful management to eradicate corruption swiftly.
Sani concluded by underscoring the importance of addressing the shortcomings in the oil and gas sector to prevent negative impacts on the overall economy. He voiced concerns that entrusting the ministry to the president’s direct supervision might hinder the desired outcome of combating corruption effectively.
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