Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has asked the head of the state oil firm NNPC, Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu, to join his cabinet, Senate President Bukola Saraki said on Tuesday.
Saraki, reading out Buhari’s cabinet nominations which need to be approved by the Upper House, did not specify a portfolio for Kachikwu.
But oil industry sources say he is expected to become state minister of petroleum to oversee daily operations under Buhari. The President told Reuters last week he would hold the petroleum ministry portfolio himself.
Buhari appointed Kachikwu, a former Exxon-Mobil manager, to head state-run Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) last August, after firing the previous board in an overhaul to fight graft and mismanagement.
Buhari’s other cabinet nominations announced on Tuesday included former state governors such as Babatunde Fashola, the former governor of the commercial capital Lagos. He also proposed Rotimi Amaechi, former governor of Rivers State.
Buhari, a former military ruler, had been under fire for failing to appoint a cabinet four months after taking office on May 29 while the oil-dependent economy was being hammered by a plunge in global oil prices.