Obasanjo denies influencing Buhari to suspend inauguration of Ararume-led NNPC board

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has dismissed the speculation that he influenced President Muhammadu Buhari to suspend the formal inauguration of the Governing Board of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) chaired by a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Ifeanyi Araraume.

This was contained in a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja by the lawyer to the former president, Dr Tunji Abayomi.

Speaking on what he called attempts by “political busybodies” to use his name to raise issues against the appointment of Senator Araraume as NNPC chairman, Obasanjo described the claim as “false and untrue”.

He pointed out that there was no iota of truth in the stories in some sections of social media.

Though the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, had explained that the inauguration would be held on a later date, there have been claims on social media that Obasanjo moved against Araraume and also influenced President Buhari to order the suspension of the inauguration because of past misunderstanding between Obasanjo and Araraume.

The reports had claimed that Obasanjo had vowed that he would ensure that Araraume never achieves anything in Nigerian politics.

However, in the statement, Dr Abayomi said that Obasanjo was preoccupied presently with efforts to better the lots of Nigerians locally, internationally, economically and therefore had no time for frivolities.

Dr Abayomi further explained that whatever misunderstanding between Araraume and Obasanjo in the past was over and that the duo had been in touch with each other and would continue to do so in the interest of the country.

Abayomi then warned against attempts by certain individuals to drag Obasanjo into the conflict in Imo State politics.

He described Araraume as an astute businessman and leader who would certainly handle the NNPC well.

He described as wicked, attempts by politicians to use Chief Obasanjo’s name to settle scores with Araraume, who he said, had no issues whatsoever with Obasanjo.

He added that Obasanjo wishes Senator Araraume and other members of the NNPC Board well and had advised they discharge their responsibilities with firmness, fairness and patriotism.

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