Sylva, who had served as governor of the state between 2007 and 2012, served as Minister of State for Petroleum Resources from August 2019 till he resigned yesterday.
Although no official notice has been seen from the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Special Assistant to the President on Digital Communications, Bashir Ahmad, in a tweet on his verified Twitter handle, @BashirAhmaad, confirmed the resignation.
Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, and former Bayelsa State governor, H.E. Timipre Sylva, has resigned his appointment to contest in the next Bayelsa governorship election,” Ahmad said.
A reliable source from the ministry, who spoke on conditions anonymity, told The Nation on Friday evening that the minister had been rumoured to have resigned his appointment since 14th of March, 2023.
He said “the story is that the Minister actually dated his resignation notice 14 of March, 2023, but submitted it to the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (OSGF) the next day, which was 15th of March and from what I gathered, he did it to face his governorship ambition in Bayelsa.
“Meanwhile, what people find curious is why hide information from the public, even your own aides. This is a time-bound thing, that is if he’s doing it for the governorship election, there’s a time limit he is expected to have quit public office, failing which he might be risking legal actions that can sabotage his entire ambition”, the source said.
Another source disclosed that Sylva had not been seen close to official public functions in a while, citing his absence at the first oil drilling of the Ebenyi-A Exploration Well, located in the Middle Benue Trough, in Obi Local Government Area of Nasarawa State, where he was represented by Gbenga Komolafe, Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC).
Prior to Bashir Ahmad’s tweet, there was confusion over the state of the Sylva’s resignation yesterday.
While a resignation letter he signed and presented to the office of the Secretary General to the Government of the Federation (SGF) dated 14th March, 2023 went viral on the social media, his SA. Media and Communications, Mr. Horatius Egua, said he had not received any instruction to that effect.
“The minister has not informed me,” he said on phone, responding to The Nation’s inquest.