From JULIANA TAIWO-OBALONYE, Abuja
The Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Deziani Alison-Madueke, has said the only reason she is hated so much is because she has stopped the “business as usual” tradition in the oil and gas sector. She told newsmen in Abuja yesterday that the reforms in the sector have come to stay, blackmail or not, noting that those with skeletons in their cupboards are afraid of her leadership style.
Alison-Madueke said that some people clamouring for her sack were doing so because she is a stumbling block to their corruption tendencies, dismissing those labelling her as corrupt and inefficient as people simply afraid of the reform agenda in the sector.
She said that never again will the government allow the return of the age-long cartel in the oil and gas sector. The minister said that despite the unjustified criticism and unfounded allegations against her, her greatest joy is that “a vast majority of Nigerians are happy with President Jonathan for the far-reaching decisions his administration had taken to stabilise the sector”.
She described those engaging in media war against the government as frustrated because “we have been able to frustrate their efforts in strangulating the economy through their devilish black market and questionable profiteering at the expense of the Nigerian people. “I would not want to join issues with those criticising me because they are crying foul that through us Mr. President has broken the old order where things are done without coordination. What is hurting them is that we have put policies in place where they can no longer cheat the government and cause untold hardship for millions of Nigerians”.
According to her, operators and stakeholders in the oil and gas sector that have the interest of Nigeria and Nigerians at heart need not be afraid of her leadership style, except those that have skeletons in their cupboards. While commending the cordial relationship between her and top officials of the ministry including those of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Petroleum Pricing and Marketing Company (PPMC), Directorate of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and other parastatals of the ministry, Alison-Madueke said it was the harmonious relationship that has brought about the high level successes by government in the sector.
She solicited the co-operation of Nigerians, oil companies and other investors at all times to achieve Mr President’s objectives for the sector, and commended the leadership of various unions in the sector for standing by President Jonathan in the ongoing reform.