Party questions presidency’s deception
The Conference of Nigerian Political Parties, CNPP, has commended the oil workers unions for stopping President Goodluck Jonathan from selling Nigeria’s four refineries – the Port Harcourt Refining Company I&II, Kaduna, and Warri Refining and Petrochemical Ltd.
The CNPP in a statement by its spokesperson, Osita Okechukwu, on Friday, however, urged the oil workers not to relent because the government could still come up with another trick to try to sell the refineries.
The CNPP said some corporations must be retained by government as a form of security for the citizenry.
“Whereas, we are not entirely opposed to privatisation, we are however of the candid view that critical state owned enterprises are the core security apparatus and each administration must muster the political will to maintain them and allow them to compete side by side with the ones erected by the private sector,” the statement said.
CNPP said the country was yet to recover from the manner in which the power and other vital state owned enterprises were privatised, saying that up to date even the monies realized from the sales are ‘mostly unaccounted for.’
“We also salute the oil & gas workers for exposing once more the double speak and deceptive tactics of the Jonathan administration, which makes most Nigerians to doubt the capacity and transparency content of the administration,” the statement noted.
The CNPP accused the presidency and top government officials of double speak.
The CNPP questioned a January 2 statement by presidential spokesperson, Reuben Abati. According to Mr. Abati’s statement, the presidency declared that the Federal Government will not sell the refineries and insisted that it had given no authorisation or endorsement for the sale of the refineries.
The presidency’s statement had come after one made by the Bureau of Public Enterprise, BPE, on December 20, which said that President Jonathan had approved the commencement of the privatisation of the nation’s four refineries by BPE and had even set up a steering committee headed by the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison- Madueke as chairman.
The CNPP, pointing out that neither Mrs. Alison- Madueke nor BPE could make such statements without the consent of the President, questioned the deception.
The CNPP said it was at a loss why President Jonathan had failed to revamp the refineries or build new ones especially, when on assumption of office in 2010, he inherited over $10 billion (N1.58 trillion) in the Excess Crude Account and the Oil & Gas revenue did not dwindle.
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