With graceful gait, he takes some unmistakable steps into the room. The expansive smile on his face belies the tremendous pressure that goes with the office he occupies. Yet, his incandescent grin signposts the successes he has achieved as Nigeria’s Minister of State of Petroleum Resources. Dr. Ibe Kachikwu in this interview with OB Focus– a publication and production of online magazine OnoBello.com (Click Here to read our debut issue) reflects characteristically on his experience as the group managing director of the state oil corporation – the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation – the impact of crude oil price on Nigeria’s economy and the global market. In sheer candour, he praises the can-do and the entrepreneurial spirit of Nigerian youths
Dressed to the nines in his tailored suit, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu cuts the image of an avant-garde businessman. He is methodical in approach, cerebral in elocution and insightful in analysis. He comes across as one Nigerian technocrat with an unwavering belief in the Nigerian project. In Nigeria’s present-day economy and polity that have witnessed better days, Kachikwu – Nigeria’s junior Minister of Petroleum Resources – argues that it is much possible now the country’s citizens to look forward to better days ahead as the President Muhammadu Buhari administration has rejuvenated an economy and polity brought to its knees by previous administration.
“The government has done well. It has been tough. It may not be a glamorous performance, in the sense that when you check your purse, it is not swelling with money,” he began.
It is all too easy to consider Kachikwu as a ‘cold-blooded’ technocrat. You would be forgiven if you thought he was. For those who know Kachikwu and his records are there to show that he has a measure of unrivalled passion for the film and publishing industry. To illustrate that: he was the pioneer of romance journalism. Against the odds, the hit publication, Hints, on the platform of True Tales Publication Limited, the trailblazer ran a weekly magazine that explored romantic tales and themes that cut across every stratum of Nigeria’s society. His readers’ delight-column, Fatherhood with Ibe, was down-to-earth and exhilarating. That phenomenon began in 1989. In 2007 he launched another publication, Complete Fashion – a lifestyle magazine with focus on film, fashion, culture and style and in 2013, Hello Nigeria- a franchise of celebrity and lifestyle magazine; Hello UK. Before Nollywood arrived, Kachikwu was one of the few creative minds that invested heavily in the film industry until “the Alaba boys”, film marketers hijacked the stage and began to call the shots regarding who was featured in movies. To date, his passion for the film and publishing industry remains unwavering.
The former publisher and ExxonMobil lawyer believed that his efforts and that of the President at refocusing the Nigerian National Petroleum Resources and strengthening the national economy would succeed if ongoing campaign to rid the country of corruption and practice transparency and honesty.
Riding on the back the digital publication, watch our exclusive three-part interview with the Minister on ‘OB Focus’.
Watch Part 1
Watch Part 2
Watch Part 3
You can also watch on YouTube: Ono Bello
CEO/Editor-in-Chief: Ono Bello (Instagram @onodiary)
Cover Personality: Dr. Emmanuel Ibe Kachikwu
Photographer: Efe Lopez (Instagram: @efelopezphotography)
Features Writer: Bayo Akinloye (Instagram: @bakinloye)
Art Direction/Styling: Worldcharming Smart Courage (Instagram: @infoworldcharming)
Cinematography: Ossyazor Uchenna (Instagram: @ossyazoruche)
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