President Muhammadu Buhari is set to head Nigeria’s Petroleum Minister for at least 18 months before appointing a minister for the ministry.
Buhari revealed his plans to sit on Nigeria’s most lucrative ministry during a meeting with some members of his political party, the All Progressive Congress (APC) recently in Abuja.
An APC source who attended the secretive meeting with Buhari told The Punch, on condition of anonymity, that President Buhari said he planned to use the 18 months to ”re-position the sensitive ministry”.
“At the meeting we had recently, we discussed the issues of portfolios and other matters, the President said he was going to handle the Ministry of Petroleum himself for about 18 months.
“He said it was after this that he would appoint a substantive minister for the ministry. He said he would only personally handle the re-organisation of the much-important ministry.
“Besides, he said the ministry needed to be reformed and be rid of corruption. He promised to sanitise the ministry,” the source said.
Buhari served as petroleum ministry in the 70s under then military ruler Olusegun Obasanjo. There have been speculations in the media that Buhari intends to sit on the Ministry of Petroleum due to the lucrative nature of the ministry. Under the military dictactorship of late General Sani Abachi, Buhari served as head of the Petroleum Trust Fund (PTF).
The leading opposition party, the People’s Democractic Party (PDP) when asked to comment says it was too early to comment on whether the President would head the Petroleum Ministry. Rather, Nigerians should wait till September, when Buhari has promised to name his cabinet.