From Chuks Moses, Awka
The five year old leadership crisis that rocked the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria(IPMAN), has now been put behind as the members have resolved to move ahead as a family to key back into the nation’s petroleum sector as a major player.
This, according to the National President of IPMAN, Elder Chinedu Okoronkwo, was part of the resolution at its 2019 Annual General Meeting(AGM) held in Awka, the Anambra state capital at the weekend where he reconciled all members and unveiled his blueprint for the way forward.
Elder Okoronkwo in his keynote address, while declaring the meeting open, went down memory lane on the crisis that had rocked the association’s leadership since Jan 20, 2014 and was brought to an end by the Supreme Court’s verdict of Dec 14, 2018, which affirmed his executive as the authentic leadership of IPMAN. He bemoaned the huge material, financial and mental losses the members had incurred while the leadership crisis lingered, but thanked God that no innocent blood was spilled.
He commended all members who remained steadfast to the ideals of the association while the crisis lasted, and prayed for the eternal repose of the souls of some members who passed on within the five-year period.
The new executive committee’s tenure runs from Dec 14, 2018, the President announced adding that the apex court judgement had brought to an end the division generated by the leadership crisis between him and Chief Obasi Lawson.
Pledging to sustain his open door policy, Okoronkwo encouraged members to feel free to approach the Katampe Abuja secretariat of IPMAN at any time when in need or for clarification “because this association belongs to all of us; and we are here to serve you all”.
He said the AGM became necessary because it’s been years it held last and also that it was considered ideal to top up the restored unity with a meeting of the highest decision organ of the association and to resolve some necessary issues concerning its smooth operations.
Among key decisions taken was the reconstitution of its Board of Trustees(BoT), bringing the number from the South East, South West, North East and North West to three each while Midwest was to be represented by two -Chiefs Solomon Ogbowe and Peter Konkon. Chief (Mrs) Aisha Labaran-Maku was also elected the association’s National Woman Leader.
The Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the association, Alhaji Yakubu Sulaiman, noted also that the meeting which held in Awka for the first time was used to take some far reaching decisions to reposition the association and recover lost grounds.
The chairman of the Calabar Depot, Elder Umana Edet noted that “the enthusiasm of delegates and the large attendance at the AGM “was indication that we have all put the crisis behind.”
A member of the House of Representatives and Adviser to the association, Hon Danlami Mohammed Kurfi, who represents Dutsimma/Kurfi Federal Constituency of Katsina state described the Awka meeting as historical because all the past Presidents, Zonal/Unit chairmen, as well as past and present executives attended.
“Today, all marketers can go home happy knowing his business is now back on track. The reconciliation has commenced and soon all would be back as one body, as Okoronkwo has reiterated he’s running an open leadership”, the lawmaker stressed.
Hon Kurfi who is the Deputy Chairman of the Petroleum (Downstream Sector) Committee of the House, commended the administration of President Mohammed Buhari for eliminating the annual monster of petroleum products scarcity at Yuletide after a very long time. He urged the President to keep it up.