Exploit your oil while its value lasts, Osinbajo tells Niger Delta leaders

Yemi Osinbajo
Yemi Osinbajo

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, on Tuesday, asked the people and investors in the Niger Delta region to make effective use of the proceeds from oil, saying the product may soon become unprofitable.
 
Mr. Osinbajo spoke at the 2nd National Council Meeting on the Niger Delta, in Akure.
 
Although he noted that Nigeria currently relied on oil for its foreign exchange earnings, the vice president said as nations of the world crave for cleaner alternative sources of energy, it (Nigeria) and indeed the Niger Delta region stood at a disadvantage, unless drastic steps were taken to stem the over-dependence on the product.
 
According to Mr. Osinbajo, the United States of America, which was the largest importer of Nigeria’s oil, had cut down on the amount of crude it imports as it currently seeks alternative energy source.
 
He said that while Asia was earnestly looking for alternative sources of energy, China and Japan had more electric charging points than fuel stations.
 
“Many of the countries in Europe have set deadlines for phasing out cars using hydrocarbon,” he said.
 
He added that the development meant that Nigeria’s crude oil would not be needed in the global market soon.
 
He said the global threats to Nigeria’s main stay were real, adding that, “the future of oil is in decline.”
 
The vice president requested the people of the Niger Delta to be prepared to allow for quick development of the region before it becomes too late.
 
“The future of oil is declining and that is why it is the duty of all stakeholders to exploit all the opportunity now and to ensure that we are not constantly battling with the security of the pipelines,” he said.
 
“We should use the resources to develop other potentials of the region and it is the duty of this council to provide that roadmap for the future. The future that we will not necessarily depend on oil.
 
“We have no reason why we should not develop all other potentials apart from oil in the region. If we can do this, the full potentials of the region will be fulfilled and our collective vision will be realised.”
 
He said the blowing up of oil pipelines was no longer fashionable as the rush for crude dwindles across the globe.
 
In his address, the Ondo State Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, noted that interventions of the past administrations in the Niger Delta had produced little result and the region still lacked evidence of development.
 
The governor recounted the long history of development interventions in the oil producing areas, noting that the commendable efforts made by past administrations to transform the economic and physical landscape had yielded positive marginal results.
 
He noted that there were glaring “facts of grinding and relentless poverty which has been the lot of the region. This is deplorable.”
 
“Issues of gross infrastructural deficit, security challenges and the general absence of social amenities expected in a modern society remain intractable,” Mr. Akeredolu said.
 
“This region presents a cruel paradox; the entire country depends on it almost entirely for sustenance.
 
“It, however, lacks evidence of development depicting its status as the proverbial goose that lays the golden egg.”
 
He said the government and people in the Niger Delta region must seize the opportunity offered by the special meeting to ruminate on the methods adopted, which had made insignificant impact in bridging the infrastructural gap.
 
“It is also incumbent on us to set our priorities right. Embarking on any white elephant projects cannot be in our interest.”
 
He called for the empowerment of the youth in the region and demanded the strengthening of transparency and accountability in the various interventions in the region.
 
Mr. Akeredolu requested the federal government to grant the state the license for a deep-sea mining port in Ilaje to boost economic activities in the delta region of the state.
 
“The development of the deep-sea mining port possesses the veritable potential to turn the Niger Delta areas of Ondo State into a hub of investment opportunities,” he said.
 
“It will assist, greatly, the quest to provide possibilities for infrastructural development of not only the area, but also the state and Nigeria at large.
 
‘‘It will add value to agricultural products and solid minerals’ development as evacuation of agricultural products and solid minerals can be easily done without stress.”
 
Mr. Osinbajo later travelled to Igbokoda, in the coastal area of the state for further dialogue with agitators and other groups in the region.
 


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  • BEN IKARI

    If there is one truth Osinbajo or nigerian government has told the oil producing communities or states, a truth I and some others already know and are terrified about what will happen to the oil producing communities when oil runs dry and not only when the globe turns to alternative energy, that truth is the fact that crude oil will no longer become profitable as the world turns to renewable sources of energy. This truth is self-evident and calls for unity and collaboration, hard work in the oil communities so that the people can almost unanimously demand resource generation, ownership and control for themselves and the country at large. There is absolute need for fiscal federalism and self-determination or internal self government (via regional system) as guaranteed by international law which nigeria is signatory.

    Meanwhile, what Osinbajo did not say or deliberately refused to say is that the only way Niger delta or South-south oil communities can maximize profit from their oil is to control their land and wealth then pay taxes to the federal government, which is currently the problem of the oil region and the country in general. The greed of those running the lazy and violent federal government, which steals from Niger delta and allows pollution to fester has constrained the people’s development and also enhanced laziness, lack of vision and competition by running a unitary and monolithic economic (oil-based) system imposed on the people by the military.

    America, for example is doing great as its states think, explore and innovate finding and securing means to generating revenue and developing at their paces. Because of ethnic domination by the Hausa-Fulanis, Yorubas and Igbos, who also have the most states, though largely nonviable and can not create budget thus depend violently on sharing oil money, the federal government of nigeria in their control has refused to operate proper federation as exemplified in America.

    In America the federating states create and use their resources then pay taxes to the central or federal government while the federal government also create its own revenue apart from taxes received and assist the states when needed. Citizens pay taxes to the state and federal government to help provide social amenities and run the country on a sustained path irrespective of challenges. The government is not telling Texas, for example, let us cheat you by drilling your oil, share the money to the rest of the states, which have no sources of revenue, but created to cheat, then pollute your land without cleaning the mess and restoring the people as nigeria has done in about 60 years.

    The same nigerian government is today turning around to say, oh we have just found out that oil will no longer be of value if you do not take good advantage now. Really? How benevolent; is this the same cheating and oppressive government? Wonders shall never end in nigeria, but Niger delta oil communities must see this as the only truth the nigerian government has told them and act for their good. If after today Niger delta oil communities do not act to project and defend their interest by any mean available and necessary they will shed black and red, blue blood from their eyes when oil runs out in 30 to 40 years or when its value gets to little or no significance.

    I have said it many times that the oil communities can stop the oil flow, wait for whatever consequences and renegotiate their future with their oil, but it seems they are satisfied with the cheating, oppression and pollution hence may be satisfied when oil serves no profit or runs out. If in about 60 years nigeria has not used your oil money to change your worries and pains into joy, changing backwardness into civility with development and empowerment then be rest assured you will suffer like never imagined when your oil dries or pays little or nothing. The time to act is now or never!

    • Frank Bassey

      @Ben Ikari: You are on point. You can’t be more correct. You said it all. Look at the current NNPC structure and tell me if this is how a country run by incorruptible saint should be:

      BUHARI’S RECENT APPOINTMENTS AT NNPC – SIGN OF AN UPRIGHT SAINT WITHOUT CORRUPTION

      1. Shaibu Musa – MD, NNPC Medical Services
      2. Ibrahim Birma – Group General Manager, Audit Division
      3. Ahmed Katagum – Group GM Shipping
      4. Kallamu Abdullahi – Group GM, Renewable Energy Division
      5. Dr Bola Afolabi – Group GM, Research & Development
      6. Adeyemi Adetunji – MD, NNPC Retail Division
      7. Usman Yusuf – Group GM, NNPC GMD Office
      8. Bala Wunti – in charge of Corporate Planning & Strategy
      9. Umar Ajiya – MD, Nigerian Products Marketing Company
      10. Muhammed Abah – MD, Warri Refining Petrochemical Company
      11. Malami Shehu – MD, Port Harcourt Refining Company
      12. Adewale Ladenegan – MD, Kaduna Refining Petrochemical Co
      13. Diepriye Tariah – MD, Integrated Data Services
      14. Rland Wubare – GM National Petroleum Investment Services
      NOTE: Maikanti Baru – still GMD, NNPC
      Isiaka Abdulrasaq – GMD Finance & Services
      Alhaji Muhammadu Buhari – Petroleum Minister

      • Ado

        There were 50 promotions announced. Why mentioned only 14 out of the 50. What are you hiding? Tell us where the remaining 36 come from if you want us to take you serious.

        • Frank Bassey

          I challenge you to publish the remaining 36, or at least, the ones you know. Do not forget to indicate their Portfolios. We are waiting.

  • kusanagi

    Niger Delta? He means Nigeria surely. Nigeria as a whole is over reliant on Oil revenues. Nigeria would collapse if it weren’t for her oil revenues. It doesn’t matter that most of it flows from the Niger Delta.

    I doubt there’ll be any diversification until it’s too late if it isn’t already.

    • Saka Pena

      I wish you are wrong, but I’m afraid not. Nigeria’s is truly a pathetic story. We’re blessed with everything except leadership. We’re blessed with all manners of seeing except vision. While one of our relevance seeking leaders are going about prescribing for others what to do in order to get it right, their failure at home is all too visible.

  • Frank Bassey

    Our Vice-President is a very wise Counsellor. He is talking as if the Niger Delta are in charge of their oil money. Please show me where the Niger Delta fits in here:

    BUHARI’S RECENT APPOINTMENTS AT NNPC – SIGN OF AN UPRIGHT SAINT WITHOUT CORRUPTION

    1. Shaibu Musa – MD, NNPC Medical Services
    2. Ibrahim Birma – Group General Manager, Audit Division
    3. Ahmed Katagum – Group GM Shipping
    4. Kallamu Abdullahi – Group GM, Renewable Energy Division
    5. Dr Bola Afolabi – Group GM, Research & Development
    6. Adeyemi Adetunji – MD, NNPC Retail Division
    7. Usman Yusuf – Group GM, NNPC GMD Office
    8. Bala Wunti – in charge of Corporate Planning & Strategy
    9. Umar Ajiya – MD, Nigerian Products Marketing Company
    10. Muhammed Abah – MD, Warri Refining Petrochemical Company
    11. Malami Shehu – MD, Port Harcourt Refining Company
    12. Adewale Ladenegan – MD, Kaduna Refining Petrochemical Co
    13. Diepriye Tariah – MD, Integrated Data Services
    14. Rland Wubare – GM National Petroleum Investment Services
    NOTE: Maikanti Baru – still GMD, NNPC
    Isiaka Abdulrasaq – GMD Finance & Services
    Alhaji Muhammadu Buhari – Petroleum Minister

    • aboki

      You are economical with the truth on the appointments in oil sector as you only mentioned 11 appointments out of 55 as earlier released .
      On energy sector please allow experts on it to digress with authority , don’t let sentiments or hatred defined your ignorance.

      • Frank Bassey

        Grammar. That is our Expert talking and “digressing” . Mr Expert, I have published 11, please give us the remaining 44 – with their Portfolios. We are waiting, please.

  • princegab

    All these quarks scientist telling us about the end of oil, don’t know where the oil came from and where is it going? Solar powered cars are toys for the rich not alternative to interal combustion engine.

    • akinwumi komolafe

      What the ‘quack scientists’ are saying is that there will be no overdependence on petroleum pruducts in predictable future,therefore,there prices will drop drastically.For instance, coal as a source of energy has not been totally abandoned but it is little patronized in our modern time.

      • princegab

        Crude oil was not supposed to be be above 5 dollars pb anyway. Don’t plant it, don’t weed it. Unfortunately, of what benefits to nigerians when these guys sold crude at over 100 $ pb? Don’t mind their rhetoric.

        • akinwumi komolafe

          Nigerians have been most unlucky lots;they have been ruled for decades by groups of junta and civilian leaders who have kleptomaniac leanings.

    • GusO

      It won’t be toys for the rich in a mere ten years from now. Our political and policymaking leaders should have paid attention when President Obama started the green revolution nine years ago. Instead they were so distracted by massive looting and corruption. The Jonathan Administration bears total responsibility for dropping the ball because his rule coincided with President Obama’s rule.

  • akinwumi komolafe

    Nigerian government has a lot to do in the spheres of power and energy.Institutes of renewable energy must be established and our youths qualitatively trained in them so that we don’t have to waste our scarce resources to buy renewable energy equipment overseas.

  • GusO

    When those Western countries and China begin using alternative sources of energy to power automobiles and their industries, they will tell us to stop using oil for energy in Nigeria because it’s polluting the atmosphere and affecting climate change. That’s exactly what they told our Finance Minister and EU representation visiting Nigeria told us. If only we have the technology and ability to develop coal power plants by ourselves, we could pay lip service to them. We will have the same problems in the future with regards to petrol and diesel vehicles. Because we can’t make vehicle engines ourselves and we can’t make industrial plants that run on oil ourselves, twenty years from now the same Western nations will tell us to use their own developed alternative energy vehicles and machines at great cost to us or we go without without anything. That’s the tragedy of Nigeria. We spend so much time on tribalism and tribal positioning, massive corruption by top officials, etc., that the world passing us by and we are not noticing it. Tribal and political infighting by so-called leaders without strategic thinking ability is killing us.

  • igboham

    Deception! since when did the Niger Delta leaders have a say in the exploitation of their oil?

    • blackdove

      I pity you!

    • Saka Pena

      Osinbajo just told us the truth. We should brace up for reality. Crude will soon take the back seat as a revenue earner. The Chinese whose demand drove crude price increases for the last three decades have set a deadline for limiting the cars using fossil fuels on their roads to just 10%.

      We should have seen this coming from decades ago. Unfortunately, our leaders (too obsessed with loot, lucre and waste) are just waking up to it. Shame really.