From Noah Ebije, Kaduna
A coalition of professionals from northern and southern Nigeria have tackled media sponsors against NNPC Group Managing Director Mele Kyari and Port Harcourt Refinery Managing Director Ahmed Dikko.
A statement jointly signed by Aminu Zakari for Arewa Legacies Assembly and Joseph Aridi of the Bayelsa Patriots for New Nigeria said continuous media attacks were designed to distract NNPC Group Managing Director and Port Harcourt Refinery Managing Director.
The group took a stand during their second-quarter meeting in Kaduna at the weekend, ‘because the attack dogs of haters of the ongoing reforms at the NNPC are going beyond the boundaries of decency.
‘As Nigerian citizens, we feel duty-bound to draw public attention to a calculated, coordinated and well-funded media agenda designed to purposely distract the NNPC management, including another committed public servant – Dikko – who has been leading the reforms at the level of Port Harcourt refinery.
‘We have been following what is obviously a well-funded media distraction against the no-nonsense NNPC GMD and his loyal lieutenants like Dikko of Port Harcourt Refinery and we are confident this mischievous plot would be dead on arrival.
‘Even though we are also doubly sure that the current GMD of NNPC and his team are so occupied with efforts to give the corporation their best shot and won’t even have the time to respond to fake figures being bandied against the NNPC, we as volunteers won’t fold our arms.
‘As Nigerian professionals, committed to speaking the truth, we will not rest on our oars and be watching some desperate people with access to the media continuously turning the truth on its head,’ the statement said.
The coalition described the funding by the NNPC for the successful discovery of oil in the North, the $2.8billion AKK Gas Pipeline Project; declaration of N287 billion profit for the first time in 44 years; the TAPE mantra; support for health and education sectors across Nigeria; reactivation of the half-dead Gas deal with Russia and OML ownership reforms as “enough to give unpatriotic elements sleepless nights.
‘It is expected that the courageous removal of subsidy that enabled NNPC to cut avoidable waste and corruption in the system, an action that once led to threats to the life of a former Finance Minister – Okonjo Iweala – will make the subsidy promoters uncomfortable because corruption always fights back,’ the statement read.