Kachikwu Apologises, Assures Nigerians Fuel Shortages to Ease off Next Week

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Dr. Ibe Kachikwu

·Says he won’t resign
Omololu Ogunmade in Abuja
The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, on Tuesday apologised to Nigerians for his comment on the nationwide fuel shortages, adding that enough measures had been put in place to end them by next week.

Specifically, he said even though a two-week target had been set to end the scarcity of fuel, he was working assiduously to ensure that between April 5th and 7th, the lingering queues would have largely disappeared.

Kachikwu who gave the assurance before the Senate Committee on Petroleum (Downstream) in the National Assembly, also tendered an unreserved apology to Nigerians over the comment he made last week stating that “he was not a magician”. He explained that he erroneously made the statement because he was not a politician.

He also apologised to any personality who felt offended by the comment, saying he made the statement in jest while speaking with journalists.

“I do apologise for the comment that I made jocularly with my friends in the press about not being a magician and it offended Nigerians; it was not meant to be, it was a side jocular issue.

“I did go on to explain what needed to be done. I did not know that it would create the kind of hyperbole that it did.
“Let me first admit that I am not a typically experienced politician, I am a technocrat. I come to work and some of the phraseologies that I may use, while being acceptable in the arena in which I play obviously will not be acceptable in the public political arena.

“So if anybody’s sensibilities were offended by those jokes, I totally apologise,” Kachikwu said.
He blamed the current scarcity on the non-availability of foreign exchange by oil marketers to sustain the importation of petrol, a situation he said now placed the entire business of fuel importation on the shoulders of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

He also said that whilst the current government inherited a subsidy bill of N600 billion, about N500 billion had been paid while the balance had been brought forward in the 2016 budget.

According to him, the government had saved N1 trillion since January 2016 because it has not paid subsidy on petrol, adding that the issue of pipeline vandalism had further complicated the problem.
However, he said for the first time, the NNPC had recovered the Escravos pipeline to the Warri refinery, a development he said would aid the movement of crude oil to the refineries.

He added that most of the 18 depots operated by NNPC are not in use, pointing out that moving fuel from Lagos to different parts of the country takes about a week and only compounds the free and quick distribution of fuel.
According to him, the inability of independent marketers to access forex had overstretched NNPC, explaining further that poor infrastructure also aggravates the situation.

Kachikwu added that in instances where 3,000 trucks are moved across the country to distribute fuel in this advanced age was not civilised.

The minister who further said that NNPC was losing an average of N40 billion a month before the advent of this government, but losses had been reduced to N3 billion a month.
He also said NNPC had a debt profile of N3 trillion, of which National Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) owed N1 trillion.

He further disclosed that a major factor responsible for the scarcity was the continuous diversion of products by marketers from the petrol stations where they are destined to be delivered.

He blamed the incidence of fuel diversion on the non-availability of a tracking system to monitor the movement of every truck from the depots to their final destinations, adding that through vigilant surveillance, the number of litres of petrol said to be consumed everyday had been brought down to 45 million litres from 55 million litres.

Disclosing that fuel supply between oil marketers and NNPC should be in the ratio 60:40, Kachikwu added that his leadership was working hard to provide a strategic reserve of 2,000,000 tonnes of petrol with the intention of finally putting paid to periodic fuel scarcity.

The minister also stated that the latest arrangement between NNPC and marketers would be in the ratio of 47:53.
He said in due course, 150 per cent of national consumption would be deposited into storage tanks, adding that meaningful solutions would be secured when refineries are working at optimal capacity.

He said the search for the full operation of the refineries had led to several advertisements for individuals and private sector firms to take over the operations of the refineries and consequently expand their capacity.
Furthermore, Kachikwu said he was working on a plan to make Chevron take over the Warri refinery and another plan for Shell to take over the Kaduna refinery.

He again apologised to Nigerians for the difficulties they have been going through as a result of the shortages, explaining that it was not the intention of NNPC to solely take over the importation of petrol, but was forced on it by emerging developments.
However, he said NNPC was currently working on an arrangement that would aid the availability of forex for marketers to import fuel.

He lamented that Nigeria was one of the very few countries where citizens choose to willfully destroy pipelines meant to serve them, a development that had made it difficult for NNPC to provide fuel for the citizenry.
Kachikwu also used the platform to tell those who had called for his resignation to perish the thought because he has a job to do.

Pointedly referring to civil society groups which had started calling for his resignation, he said: “All those planning to come to Abuja for a protest should save their fuel, I am not going to resign, I have a lot of work to do.”
According to the minister, he did not accept to be Minister of Petroleum in order to create scarcity.
He also promised to embrace the advice given by the Senate committee to employ the services of the civil defence corps to accompany petrol tankers to intended petrol stations in order to stem the diversion of products.

  • Big Apple

    Buhari APC government keep lying to Nigerians. Kachukwu told Nigerians Nigerians the truth and Buhari APC government forced him to reverse it and lied to Nigerians again. Wayo government.

  • Toby

    Government of jokers. Asking chevron to take over warri refinery and shell to take over kaduna refinery. Refineries that woke up from the dead just last May on seeing Buhari’s body language. Now to be given to these foreign entities. What a joke!

    The substantive minister of petroleum must apologize to Nigerians if by next week this fuel problem is not solved.

    It is so surprising that the body language of the new sheriff in town has failed to impact a bunch of rag tag elements that destroy our petroleum pipelines. Is the sheriff still in town or has he traveled out again?

    • Victor

      Lol!!!!.

  • The Analyst

    At least the guy knows what to do. He has stated the stumbling blocks
    1. No foreign exchange
    2. Saving on the subsidy paid to the importers
    I see a problem of strategy here, we have to get our systems working effectively and that will systematically remove corruption. Right now, we are going the other way round.

  • kenny

    Thank God that the Nwachukwu apologies to the Nigerian and also enumerate the problem facing fuel shortage in the country. That action is professional, that is what is expected of a leader. The true Nigerian knew no one is perfect except the Almighty God than the believe of some tribe who always see themselves as most perfect being on earth and in Nigeria.

    I am not surprise if they see the matured action of the Minister who confirmed to have said that statement jockingly to his journalist friends who in turn blow the statement out of proportion and followed by true Nigerian reactions.

    Such tribe will continue to be disappointed until reality is dawn on them that no good can come to anyone that never wish other good.

    Such a tribe.

    • Victor

      Now you suddenly remember nobody is perfect, but when people like you were heaping all the problems and failures of Nigeria since independence on the shoulders of the immediate past administration, it never occurred to you that nobody is perfect. This is the hypocrisy of APC politicians/leaders and their followers. Am most grateful to God you mention that “no good thing can come to those who don’t wish others well”, this is exactly what this government is suffering and will continue to surfer because they never wish the immediate past administration well while in opposition, they capitalized on every opportunity to run down the past administration, and today you have suddenly forgotten about that. Trust me, what your party/government sow, that they will reap and continue to reap. No matter the guise they want to hide under, this government has so far been a FAILURE IN ALL RAMIFICATION. Under this government, we have had the worse fuel scarcity in our history as a nation despite the hike in price, lowest power generation in history since independence, sharp fall of the value of the Naira against other major currencies, job loss/cut both within the public and private sector rather that job creation they promised Nigerians, deliberate disobedience of court orders/rulings, selective fight against corruption, huge budget padding as was the case of the 2016 Budget submitted to the national assembly for consideration, just to mention a few, and people still choose to deceive themselves. You are permitted to continue to lie to yourself for as long as you want.

      • kenny

        Man, when I mean imperfection, I don’t mean it the way you guys are seen but from human error which was exactly what play out here on both Nwachukwu and the president and not the other way of;

        1) I DONT GIVE A DAM

        2) STEALING IS NOT CORRUPTION,

        3) 7 is greater that 19 and;

        Many other ugly and embarrassing actions from the last administration of your uncle Ebele.

        Can anyone justify all this revelation of people governing our treasury instead of those that voted for their wasteful years?

        However thanks for your response at least.

        • Big Apple

          You see your mindset! Yes when President Jonathan said stealing is not corruption, he was 100% right. If a persons mind is not corrupt, that person would not think of stealing, that explains it that corruption is what leads to stealing and not the other way round.

          About Gov Amaechi, it was agreed that amongst them the governors that it was the turn of the north to produce the next chairman hence he Gov Amaechi has done two tenure but because of his disobedience and selfish political interest he went against the President Jonathan’s advice and went ahead to contest for the 3rd time.

          May I advise you not to discuss what you don’t know about. Your Buhari APC government shall not succeed because they came on the mantle of leadership with lies, deceit and propaganda.

          • kenny

            Big Apple… You got it right by supporting my comment above on corruption is not stealing but deviated afterwards by mentioning Mr. Amechi which has nothing to do on this issues.

            Kachukwu apologies as the president and not the other way.

            More so, I was one of those that supported GEJ right from when he was acting and later president because of being the first PhD’s person to attained that exalted position. Secondly someone who come from the minority even though I was craving for the Ibo person because I know what would have happened to Nigeria positively but got over it when the same Ibos don’t bothered and all my support went to GEJ.

            I back out of supporting GEJ when many negative things below the standard of PhD holder but never condemn his government thinking things will change until mama peace came on board to distroy the little legacy left for GEJ to redeem himself and safe academic community from international embarrassment with those points I raised above which different from what is playing now.

            Finally I support good government and not the party. I the current one finally misbehave after 3 years, you will still see me condemn same but in less than a year of this administration, it is unthinkable for me to start talking negatively against it going by all the mind boggling revealations on how PDP wasted 16 years governing our treasury instead of the people that voted for them.

            As a Christian as you are, I will suggest you put sentiment aside, fear the Almighty God and leave whatever happening currently in the hands of God because a country that have been bastardise corruptly cannot get corrected in less than 364 days.

            Thank you and have a good evening.

          • Big Apple

            Point of correction, I never supported your assertion against Former President Jonathan. What I did was to educate you better in your misreading of what President Jonathan meant by saying that corruption is not stealing.

            Secondly, I mentioned Gov. Amaechi because those numbers you mentioned point to Gov. Amaechi’s governors forum election, and this is an indication that you don’t follow Nigeria politics well. Read your post and see where you wrote that 7 is greater than 19. I know how that numbers came about, so please if don’t know how they came about, please don’t write what you cannot defend.

            I can see that Buhari APC lies, deceits and propaganda are still catching up with you, and that is why you don’t know that President Jonathan was the best thing that ever happened to Nigeria.

            I don’t know where you live but you can agree with me that your Buhari APC government has turned Nigeria upside down and destroyed the biggest economy in Africa that Jonathan built and handed over to him.

            Nigerians economy under Buhari APC government is in shambles, Nigerians are suffering like never before while your Ogah Buhari is busy globetrotting at the expense if Nigerians. Fueling scarcity is biting hard on Nigerians, businesses are suffering, everything in Nigeria is stagnant, no money in circulation because your clueless Buhari withdrew federal government cash flow in the system, today, £1.00 to N450.00 and $1.00 to N350.00.

            Your Buhari does not have the intellectual capacity and exposureto be the Nigerian president, he is completely clueless and incompetent. 10 months of Buhari APC government, Nigerians have been experiencing the worst economic hardship than ever before.

            Look at your Buhari APC government ministers, they are all dummies, they are afraid to work because of fear of going to jail. Everyday what your hear from all the ministers are policy statements without action.

            President Jonathan has done virtually everything for them that is why they are confused and don’t know where to start from. Instead of Buhari APC government and his ministers to leverage on all the great achievements of President Jonathan and make them better, they care busy destroying them.

            That is why Buhari APC government is confused and they will continue to be confused till 2019. May we be alive to see Buhari APC government kicked out of power come 2019.

            Buhari APC government is evil government, they shall never succeed because they have destroyed so many soles in Nigeria with their lies, deceits and propaganda.

            I rest my case.

      • Big Apple

        I concur with you. Buhari APC government wayo government.

  • RumuPHC

    A very commendable gesture from Ibe Kachikwu.

    I never expected less from such a Nigerian who has excelled in the best institutions of learning at home and abroad. One must first be a gentleman before he can be any other thing meritous . Learning is not only in knowledge but more importantly in character. Kachikwu is apparently well schooled, well mannered and a leader.

    By apologizing to Nigerians, Ibe Kachikwu has shown that he understand what public service is and must always act as a role model to the young Nigerians who look up to people like him as leaders and role model.

    The issue is not what he said . It was more about how and when he said it considering the surrounding circumstances. Nobody expects Kachikwu to perform magic in NNPC but in accepting the job a lot more are expected of him considering his pedigree in the academia and industry.

    Every Nigerian is actually praying for Ibe Kachikwu to succeed because his success will be our collective triumph in many ways. Nigerians will have fuel for their cars and it will be clear to government that success is only achievable by fitting round pegs in round holes.

    Above all, Kachikwu’s ability to turn- around NNPC will be an assurance to many parents currently sacrificing to send their children to the best school abroad and also to government who must give forex at CBN rate , that good education pays and such investment is never a waste.

    Ibe Kachikwu must succeed . Too many things are at stake and failure is certainly not an option.

    Apology accepted. Now let’s get back to work!

    • William Norris

      Getting back to work is USELESS…..unless it involves introducing REAL SOLUTIONS to tackle the problem. Unfortunately, the one who makes the final decisions is NOT ready to do what needs to be done. Thank goodness for the White Men who invented the internet.

      *****************************************************************************************************
      https://www.thecable.ng/kachikwu-buhari-ild-sold-refineries

      The Cable Online Nigeria

      September 25 2015

      Kachikwu: I’d Have Sold Refineries But For Buhari

      Ibe Kachikwu, group managing director (GMD) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), on Friday said President Muhammadu Buhari advised against selling of the nation’s refineries.

      Addressing journalists in Lagos, Kachikwu said the refineries were currently working at 30 per cent capacity as against the minimum of 60 per cent required to generate profit.

      “Personally, I will have chosen to sell the refineries, but President Buhari has instructed that they should be fixed,” he said.

      “After they are fixed, if they still operate below 60 per cent, then we will know what to do.

      **************************************************************************************************

      Instead of privatizing, the Brainless Aboki has instead been INCREASING the participation of NNPC in the fuel market.

  • vincentumenyiora

    CAN THEY PLEASE CONSIDER THE SUGGESTION BY CHINA TO BUILD railways to connect some your State HQ. if not all at least it will help you in distributing the produced fuel and your human beings (Nigerians) safely and the fuel in particular, will no more be diverted at least!
    Nigeria gave up their God given gifts – gas and crude oil to foreign countries to refine for her and they import the finished products – paying for the importation costs and then (also)subsidies for Nigerians to be able to buy the fuel and the ancillary products because none is produced in Nigeria and Obasanjo and others will claim they have been good leaders for Nigeria – they are all blaming Jonathan for the mistakes! Worse is that when the importers are not paid they luck up their filling stations – hoarding the petroleum products, and Nigerians queue up some of them with their vehicle ‘tanks’ and jerry can – cup in hand, as it were begging for fuel to be sold to them – looks pathetic sometime when you are told that Nigeria is one of the leader countries producing crude in the World yet without enough fuel for her people to use – they import fuel! Worse is that the importers do not pay commensurate taxes so as to help Nigerian government sustain repairs on the poorly managed existing plants! Nigeria -TAKU!
    I mean, after all is said, we want to know what the value of Council of State is for Nigeria if with ex-Military Heads of State (Field Marshals) constituting the membership, Nigeria could not deal with the issue Chibuck girls abduction promptly at the time, and OBJ has the temerity to blame Jonathan! I mean OBJ has his own blemishes, which Jonathan should be able to tell us about – for example how is it that Nigeria let our crude to be taken to foreign countries to be refined and we (Nigeria) pays for such referning and then we impost the finished produces and pay for them under subsidies! The host countries use our
    crude not only to afford employment for their people but enhance the supply of fuel in the (host) countries such that they do not have fuel scarcity in the host countries as we have in Nigeria and we pay for the exercise of refining with our foreign exchange lodged in the host countries! In other words we are surrendered our God given natural gift – like in my native parlance, you gave your yam produce to somebody to keep and he now cuts or ‘dishes out’ the bits and pieces for you and your family at his own volition, as it were, andyou are now over whelmed with demand problem to feed not only your selves but your families – that is what this simple illustration tells! So, the issue is
    also who arranged for the transfer of our ‘chattel’ in the crude and gas to countries in Europe and thereby (as a result) leave us in Nigeria with our petrol tanks and jerry cans begging or queuing for fuel perennially?
    The question now is where did OBJ’s administration come into this arrangement because it is now affecting everything we can do in Nigeria irrespective of your background? I mean talking seriously about failures of leaderships for Nigeria!

  • Romla

    Your apology fully,completely and totally accepted.You are all class and so far one of the Ministers that is taking decisive action and making positive changes.We wish you well and we continue to pray for your success in this sector that is very sensitive to the economic survival of the country.

    • William Norris

      Being all class has nothing to do with solutions. It seems it’s now possible to post links here so here’s 2 for your perusal. Nigerians seem to want to ignore RECENT history.

      The ONLY long term solution to the fuel crisis – and economic crisis in general – is privatization & deregulation. Kachikwu knows this and has advised Buhari to do just that, but his advice was rejected.

      1.
      https://www.thecable.ng/kachikwu-buhari-ild-sold-refineries

      Cable Online Nigeria

      September 25 2015

      Kachikwu: I’d Have Sold Refineries But For Buhari

      Ibe Kachikwu, group managing director (GMD) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), on Friday said President Muhammadu Buhari advised against selling of the nation’s refineries.

      Addressing journalists in Lagos, Kachikwu said the refineries were currently working at 30 per cent capacity as against the minimum of 60 per cent required to generate profit.

      “Personally, I will have chosen to sell the refineries, but President Buhari has instructed that they should be fixed,” he said.

      “After they are fixed, if they still operate below 60 per cent, then we will know what to do.

      ****************************************************************************************

      2. Unfortunately the link to the story below is broken, but it was from Sun News Online.

      [B]Subsidy Removal:I’m Ready for Mass Revolt -Jonathan[/B]

      From [I]IHEANACHO NWOSU[/I], Abuja

      [U]Sunday, December 11, 2011[/U]


      President Goodluck Jonathan, at the weekend, vowed to take the option of social revolt from Nigerians than back down on his plan to withdraw the subsidy on fuel.

      [B]He said his insistence was informed by his knowledge that [U]Nigeria’s economy will collapse in two years if the subsidy is sustained[/U][/B].

      Sunday Sun learnt President Jonathan stated this at a meeting with the leadership of some civil society organizations at the President Villa in Abuja, which was also attended by Vice President Namadi Sambo, the Minister of Finance and Coordinator of the Economic Team, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, and her Petroleum Resources counterpart, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke

      **************************************************************************************************

      Class, honesty, integrity, patriotism…..MEAN NOTHING without requisite KNOWLEDGE and sound thinking based on economic reality. Back in 1984/85, Brainless Buhari did EXACTLY the same things he’s doing now and the result was the same – DISASTER.

      • Romla

        Correct.neither do half truths make good comments.I never said class brings solutions,you should note as i factually stated that he is taking decisive action and bringing about positive changes which usually results in solutions.Nothing wrong with privatization and deregulation,except that you seem to think privatization is the automatic solution to everything.I am sure you will soon recommend privatization of the Naira as the solution to the falling value of the currency.

        • William Norris

          LOL !!! I didn’t accuse you of saying that class brings solutions, did I? Tsk, tsk….you’re being too defensive, I wonder why. Seems The Aboki isn’t performing up to par, sorry, Nigerians made that choice LOL !!!

          Privatize naira? Currency, judiciary and security are basic functions of society that MUST be provided by government. Though technology is altering the calculus with digital currency such as bitcoin, which is private.

          There’s nothing wrong with low value naira. The problem is Brainless Bubu Buhari and his feudal tendencies. Simply FLOAT the naira, stop FIXING PRICE and all the problems in the forex market will DISAPPEAR overnight.

          • Romla

            I totally agree that the President and his administration are not performing up to par.Honestly by May 29th if there is no positive direction my support ends for this administration,though i will still give them my prayers particularly for the long suffering people of Nigeria.

          • William Norris

            Interesting. This may shock you given that I hate Buhari, but I think the blame for the current crisis lies with the Nigerian people who rejected the withdrawal of fuel subsidies in Jan 2012.

            The Jan 2012 continuation of fuel subsidies caused the present crisis, NOT low crude oil prices.

            Right NOW, the INFLEXIBLE forex market with the FIXED & SUBSIDIZED price of dollar at 197, poses an intolerable risk for the Nigerian economy. Until the exchange rate is deregulated, the economy will continue to get worse. FACT.

  • chrisyoung21

    God bless u Mr Kachikwu,you are simply a man of honour##

  • christopher tito

    if nigerians can not handle Nigeria please sell the Damn country off to people who can..Ah