Leadership (Abuja)

12 June 2014

Nigeria: OPEC Scribe - Protests Against Diezani in Vienna

Photo: Premium Times
Alison-Madueke

The bid by the minister of petroleum resources, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke, to become the next secretary-general of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) was yesterday dashed as the body decided to extend the tenure of the incumbent secretary-general, Libya's Abdalla Salem el-Badri amidst protests against her bid.

The conference decided to extend El-Badri tenure for a period of six months from January 1, 2015, but gave no reasons for the extension.

LEADERSHIP gathered that Diezani was almost sailing through as the Secretary-General OPEC until a petition and protests of the alleged$20billion oil missing money in Vienna yesterday, spearheaded by the Director of Gatekeepers Nigeria, Mr Blessing Agbomhere, scuttled her bid. Without the protest and petition Diezani perhaps would have been the first female Secretary-General of OPEC.

Speaking to exclusively LEADERSHIP, Agbomhere said he was in Vienna to ask Diezani to refund the missing $20billion or explain to Nigerians what happened to the money.

"I wrote a petition and distributed it to all the delegates at the conference, how could they nominate someone like her as the Secretary-General. She should at least tell them where the missing money went to," Agbomhere said. "She then came to the podium and lied to the delegates that she was cleared by the Senate regarding any missing money, and I was forced to tell her that the Senate also reported some missing millions of dollars. That was when some of her aides attacked me and we were asked to leave the venue of the event. We decided to stay outside the premises on a public property and protest. It's called the #bringbackourmissingmoney. The Austrian police advised us on how to go about it and here we are."

Speaking to Global Reporters Vienna (GRV) before the official opening of the conference, a journalist of Ekbariya News from Saudi Arabia emphasized that Diezani would definitely be the next OPEC scribe and did not see the protests stopping her.

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