From Everest Ezihe, Owerri
Political pundits have raised alarm that, President Muhammadu Buhari, may have probably suspended the last Wednesday inauguration of the Board of the Nigeria National Petroleum Company (NNPC), led by Senator Ifeanyi Ararume due to administrative convenience as well as catalogue of petitions against some members of the board and its constitution.
Comrade Uchenna Dike and Barr. Charles Okoroafor who are public affairs analysts and commentators revealed these in Owerri while interacting with The Authority on the burning issue.
Recall that since the suspension pronouncement the media especially the social media has been abuzz with the suspension order.
However, a statement credited to the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha said that “President Muhammadu Buhari has directed the immediate suspension of the inauguration of the newly constituted Board of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) scheduled for Wednesday 24th November 2021 until further notice,”
The pundits argued that “the suspension of the date of the inauguration does not imply that the Board has been dissolved”
“Senator Araraume has since resumed duty at the NNPC Tower as Board Chairman of the NNPC in Abuja and just two weeks ago, the Board members concluded a retreat. The inauguration was just postponed indefinitely perhaps because of the tight schedule of Mr. President.
“The President has been away on a foreign trip for over a week and this may have affected his schedules and engagements on his return back to Nigeria
The pundits further pointed out that “the CAC which registered the NNPC do have the names of the Board members as Trustees. Did the press release by the SGF say the Board of the NNPC has been dissolved? Did Femi Adesina or Garba Shehu, who are presidential spokesmen of the President issue a release to say the Board has been dissolved? Why all the twists and misinterpretations over a mere administrative matter?
“Nothing has changed. Senator Araraume remains the Board Chairman of the NNPC and the members of the Board are very much intact” the pundits insisted.
It’s pertinent to recall that the Board was constituted two months ago by President Muhammadu Buhari as
Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina had in a statement on September 19, said the Board was set up “ in consonance with Section 53(1) of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) 2021, which requires the Minister of Petroleum Resources to cause for the incorporation of the NNPC Limited within six months of commencement of the Act, in consultation with the Minister of Finance on the nominal shares of the company,”
Senator Ararume was appointed as Chairman of the Board, while Kyari and Umar Ajiya were Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer respectively.
Other members included Dr Tajudeen Umar (North East), Mrs Lami Ahmed (North Central), Mr Mohammed Lawal (North West), Senator Margaret Okadigbo (South East), Mr Constance Marshal (South South), and Mr Pius Akinyelure (South West).