Just days ago, BP’s CEO declared that he’d “like his life back”—and now, it looks like his wish might be granted. In a surprise move, Tony Hayward announced Friday that he’d be stepping down from his role in managing oil spill cleanup operations so that he could focus on keeping the petroleum giant’s main business running smoothly. The baton has been passed to Bob Dudley, one of the company’s American directors, who manages a separate in-house business, Hayward said during a teleconference with Wall Street analysts. The decision comes after a series of gaffes by the chief, who has faced increasing public criticism for his handling of the spill. In addition, The Guardian reports that he made the move, in part, to curb rising anti-British sentiment. Hayward did stress, however, that he’s committed to investigating the disaster, and he apologized repeatedly for the damage already caused.