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Former petroleum minister Tam David-West dies at 83


A former minister of petroleum, Professor Tamunoemi David-West is dead.

David-West, born in Buguma, Kalabari, in what is now Rivers State, died on Monday, at age 83.

He received his higher education at the University of Ibadan (1956–1958) and earned a BSc degree at Michigan State University (1958–1960), an MSc degree at Yale University (1960–1962), and a PhD degree at McGill University.

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He served in the Nigerian government as commissioner of education and a member of the Executive Council of Rivers State between 1975 and 1979.

He was also a member of the 50-man Constitution Drafting Committee set up by the Federal Military Government of General Murtala Muhammed in 1979.

He was a federal minister of petroleum and energy under General Muhammadu Buhari’s military government between 1984 and 1985, and as minister of mines, power, and steel under General Ibrahim Babangida in 1986.

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He was eventually removed as minister and arrested by the Babangida regime for allegedly contributing to the economic adversity of the country; He was discharged and acquitted of these charges by Nigeria’s Special Appeal Court on 8 August 1991.

David-West wrote many books and was a social critic who spoke strongly on national issues.

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