The ex-Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, emphasized that Bola Tinubu, the President of Nigeria, should not simultaneously serve as the Minister of Petroleum.
Sanusi conveyed this opinion during his address at The Bank Directors Summit held at the Congress Hall of the Transcorp Hilton in Abuja.
He stressed the importance of separating these roles to ensure accountability. Sanusi pointed out that having a distinct individual responsible for the petroleum sector is crucial, as it allows for open discourse in case of any issues without fear of reprisals against the President.
Additionally, the former Emir of Kano urged for an audit of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL). He acknowledged that advocating for such scrutiny had previously cost him his position as the CBN Governor.
“Let me advise that the idea of the president being petroleum minister. The last president was minister of petroleum for eight years.
“When I was governor of CBN, we had a petroleum minister. So when we talk about NNPC, I could attack Diezani, now nobody can talk about petroleum because in 8 years if you talk, you are attacking the president,” he said.
President Tinubu upon assumption of office, split the Ministry of Petroleum Resources with the appointment of Ekperipe Ekpo as Minister of State, Gas Resources; and Heineken Lokpobiri as Minister of State, Petroleum Resources but retained the position of substantive Minister of Petroleum Resources for himself.
This follows the style of his predecessor, Muhammadu Buhari who also doubled as the Minister of Petroleum during his tenure.
But Sanusi stated during his talk that the President shouldn’t be the Minister of Petroleum as well.