Kachikwu, Adeosun shun Senate public hearing, Saraki kicks

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Senate President Bukola Saraki yesterday protested the shunning of a public hearing by Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr Ibe Kachikwu and Finance Minister, Kemi Adeosun.

The Senate joint committee on Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) chaired by Senator Kabir Marafa (APC, Zamfara) had invited the ministers to a public hearing on three bills on petroleum industry, but they were absent.

Declaring the hearing open, Saraki said it was unfortunate that the ministers were not in attendance.

Marafa, after calling the roll call of stakeholders in attendance, said the ministers were formally invited to make contributions at the public hearing.

Aside the ministers, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele and the Accountant General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris were not in attendance.

Marafa said, “It is quite unfortunate that we are talking about these serious bills without these people. I hope it is not one of those things that we are witnessing.

“We have extended invitations to them. If we don’t see any changes by tomorrow, we will communicate this to the President. He is the Minister of Petroleum and he is interested in these bills. We will give them till tomorrow (today),” he said.

On the bill, Saraki said the three new PIBs being considered by the Senate will boost economic growth and lead to a more efficient oil sector that is globally competitive.

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