Minister Of State For Petroleum Ibe Kachikwu And The Twisted May Date For End To Fuel Scarcity

By Nelson Ekujumi
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Yesterday evening, one read a disturbing news online and it has been trending widely where it was reported that the minister of state for petroleum and GMD of NNPC, Mr. Ibe Kachikwu was quoted after he led a delegation of the executives of the two major labour unions in the oil industry namely NUPENG & PENGASSAN to a meeting with President Buhari at Aso Rock Villa, Abuja, that the ongoing fuel scarcity nationwide, will persist till May this year.

When one read that piece of news and knowing the level of pains and anguish that Nigerians are presently undergoing nationwide as a result of the perennial shortage of the product at the gas stations and will undergo if the scarcity is not addressed in the short time, one was greatly perturbed and felt something was amiss in that news item. One read it over and over again, but couldn't lay his hands on where the minister particularly made that statement or insinuated such in the interview granted the media after the meeting.

One has even had the privilege of listening and watching the minister's interview on radio and TV, and still, one didn't hear him allude to a particular date for the end to the perennial fuel scarcity other than his statement that they are doing everything humanly possible to bring an immediate end to the ugly and embarrassing situation, which was very encouraging.

However notwithstanding, my sixth sense alerted me that this was another misinformation, falsehood and twisted news meant to embarrass the Buhari administration and incite the public.

The reason for my suspicion was because since the advent of this administration which was birthed due to the resilience and determination of the Nigerian people to reclaim their country, the government has consistently battled enemies of democracy and peace of the country who are eternally pained by the loss of political power at the polls and have retreated to a new vocation of spread of lies, falsehood, misinformation, concocted interviews, quoting out of context to manufacture inciting news stories just to cause public disaffection against the government.

For our collective memory, one hopes we have not forgotten so soon, the lies, misinformation and propaganda of concocted interviews against the Buhari administration by notable and credible Nigerians like Mr. Femi Falana, Bishop Onaiyekan, Raji Fashola, Ayo Opadokun, Prof Itse Sagay, to mention just but a few.

Also the Buhari government has consistently had to issue clarifications or rejoinders to misrepresentation, lies and propaganda of mischief makers who are always twisting what the government or its officials said or didn't say with the sole aim of causing public disquiet and endangering our democracy.

This war of misinformation, lies, falsehood and quoting out of context against the Buhari administration can be seen in the way, these anti democratic elements twisted President Buhari's recent statement at a foreign gathering where he admonished some Nigerians to stop giving the country a bad name abroad through commission of crime and rather return home to contribute to nation building.

The admonition of President Buhari was twisted to mischievously state that Mr. President labelled Nigerians as a people as criminals and this distortion was latched onto by mischief makers including a member of Nigeria's upper legislative chamber who developed the hashtag, ‪#‎Iamnotacriminal‬ when in reality, President Buhari's statement was the truth and nothing but the truth. But Nigerians knowing the impeccable character of Mr. President and the truth of his statement, aligned with him and derided the mischief makers whose campaign of calumny as championed by this senator of, I just want to make sense and his ilks, collapsed on their head.

Just recently, the minister of information and culture in an interview was misquoted and maliciouslly reported to have said that the management of Nigeria's economy was beyond President Buhari. Again, when this news broke and it went viral courtesy of this disgruntled group of Nigeria will not know peace under Buhari, one knew it was a fabrication and one's suspicion was confirmed the following day when the honourable minister issued a rejoinder.

Now it's the turn of the honourable minister of state for petroleum and GMD of NNPC to be at the receiving end of this vicious attack of lie, falsehood, misinformation, concocted interview meant to embarrass the government and as usual, he has come out to deny making such a statement which is the fact.

As the Muhammadu Buhari government is focussed on confronting the challenges of the everyday existence of the common man, one must encourage them not to be distracted from communicating with the Nigerian people, by the antics and actions of rumour mongers and peddlers of lies, falsehood, misinformation, manufacturers of concocted interviews, twisters and manipulators of statements who are hellbent on sabotaging the information nexus between the government and the citizenry with the sole purpose of inciting the people, by the grace of God they have failed and will always fail.

Nelson Ekujumi

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