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Kachikwu Group denies oil minister's governorship ambition

The group said it was not the first time the issue was being deliberately pushed out to test the waters.

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Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources


The Conscience of the Niger (TCN) has warned those trying to discredit the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, by insinuating that he was interested in an elective office in 2019, to desist before they incur the wrath of God.

In a statement yesterday by its leader, Mr. Mitai Okeroghene, the group said it was not the first time the issue was being deliberately pushed out to test the waters.

He said it had been dismissed a few times by Dr. Kachikwu himself, but noted that the timing now reeked of mischief and must be addressed at once.

Okeroghene was of the opinion that those who want to discredit the minister knew what they were doing by churning out his campaign posters to make it appear as if he wanted to be governor of Delta State, knowing full well this has a lot of implications for his current posting.

He said, "Dr. Kachikwu is not stupid. He is a technocrat and not a politician and has not in any form or shape shown indications of wanting to contest election, and so, it stands to reason that those behind his posters flooding Abuja have a sinister plot to achieve and their message is also clearly directed at their target audience, hence, the choice of Abuja as their location for the posters.

"For the sake of argument, let us admit that Dr. Kachikwu has an interest in the governorship of Delta State, is Abuja the place to start pasting posters? What is the correlation between Abuja and Delta governorship? But, of course, they want to insinuate that he was seeking the Abuja blessing, which of course invalidates the whole idea.

"This is why we have come out to state for emphasis and for the umpteenth time that Dr. Kachikwu is not interested in the governorship of Delta or any other elective political office as he currently has a more challenging and critical national assignment, which he has been able to discharge creditably well in the last over a year in spite of the attendant challenges in that office."

According to Okeroghene, the propensity to want to destroy others without any justification remains a major preoccupation of both the active and the passive players in this part of the world and invariably, the bane of underdevelopment in the country.

"Nothing can explain the attack on Dr. Kachikwu because as far as we are concerned, this is an attack on the career of a man who is focused and determined to make a change in the best way possible and as permitted within the limitations of his office.

"He deserves support and commendation and not to make him appear unduly ambitious or losing sight of his current brief.

"But if this is targeted at influencing the rumoured imminent cabinet reshuffle by those who find his ongoing reforms in the system discomforting or a move by those who want to mount pressure on him to run for Delta governorship, it is dead on arrival, because Dr. Kachikwu is not oblivious of the weight of the assignment on his hands and is leaving nothing to chance in making sure that the government of President Muhammadu Buhari succeeds," he said.

Okeroghene, however, said his group had begun investigations into those behind the move and that if they failed to desist from trying hard to discredit Kachikwu, they would go after those behind the attacks.

He said, "Is it a crime for a man to be adept at his work? It is surprising that after stabilising the sector and still cleansing it of its corrupt past, this is all that Kachikwu gets. But whatever creepy plans they are hatching, he is one man, who will leave government unblemished and very successful."

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