President Bola Tinubu is set to retain the office of the minister of petroleum resources.
This is because the president should have named a petroleum minister, prompting suggestions that he would assume the position.
The president’s alleged plan is similar to his predecessors, Olusegun Obasanjo and Muhammadu Buhari.
Both former presidents only appointed a junior minister and assumed the position of senior minister even as sitting presidents.
The only slight change in Tinubu’s plan is that this time, there are two junior ministers under the ministry.
President Tinubu appointed Heineken Lokpobiri as the minister of state for petroleum resources, and Ekperikpe Ekpo was appointed the minister of state for gas resources.
Lokpobiri, 56, served as minister of state for agriculture and rural development from 2015 to 2019 and as senator representing Bayelsa West Senatorial District from 2007 to 2015.
Ekpo emerged as the All Progressives Congress senatorial candidate for Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial District in 2022. He was also the House of Reps member representing Abak/Etim Ekpo/Ika Federal Constituency from 2007 to 2011.
Meanwhile, following his deployment to the ministry, Senator Lokpobiri, on August 18, paid an official visit to President Tinubu.
State House sources say they reviewed the president’s vision and initiatives for a more productive petroleum sector.
President Tinubu was said to have talked the minister-designate through his roadmap to a more profitable sector for the nation.
Speaking afterwards, the Bayelsa-born politician expressed happiness over what he described as “proactive thinking” on the part of Tinubu and for his initiatives to develop the nation’s economic backbone with the view to strengthen the economy.
Former Rivers state governor and minister-designate for the Federal Capital Territory, Ezenwo Nyesom Wike, was part of the meeting.