This blessing of oil in our earth's crust has phenomenally been messing with us for so long to a point where we are becoming a blasphemous people and with no shame at that.
Even if we have full resource control in place, the huge development from the Niger Delta alone will propagate to the nooks and crannies of the whole of Nigeria and the nation will rightly assume its place in Africa and in the committee of nations worldwide. This is possible not only from abundance of oil wealth but with the support of other vast resources especially human.
Quotes from Holy Scriptures verily harsh upon us, that if a people are not grateful to the Lord for his blessings, then they shall surely be thankful to his wrath that shall come upon them. The abundance has definitely spoiled us and we have long developed into an enriched stock without a care in the world. We have taken for granted our blessings and we have systematically turned it into a demon that has bewitched everyone and is leading all to the valley of destruction, a valley right here in our lands.
All the hullabaloo, the fracas, the struggle for power, the maiming, the confusion our dear Nigeria has been engulfed in over the years and especially in the last year is centred on oil and the importation of petroleum products. Billions of dollars have been spent in the effort to provide Nigerians with petrol, diesel and kerosene.
This endeavour has been mired in controversy and corruption, so colossal, it is disheartening and scary for the future sustenance of this project called the Nigerian Project.
Security remains the number one responsibility of government and as it is threatened, the path to restoring it is in accurately defining the source and cause of the threat to security and stability. A citizenry saddled with the depression of watching how even the God given oil cannot be properly tapped and utilised for the general benefit of all is bound to be in upheaval. The regime of subsidies in different spheres of life have been the surest and quickest ways of having direct impact of the Nigerian government on its people and with that withering away, hopes are lost and that citizenry becomes disgruntled.
We have been over burdened with all these startling revelations of how monies that our calculators only read to the E exponent are wasted and siphoned. To begin to solve these mysteries and thievery seems to be a task as huge as rearing ghosts!
Where do you start? Where do you camp? Where will you stop? Will you ever be able to finish? Corruption in Nigeria has become a forest fire and with the situation the country finds itself, only quick wins can probably ameliorate the burdens we are carrying.
The government has not been shy of borrowing just as it has not been shy of begging investors to come to our shores for example the new VISA policy that eases entry for investors into Nigeria. It is my candid opinion that government must hurriedly if possible magically put in place refineries across the country. New ones that can latch on the distribution networks of the old ones. Investors in partnership with our oil moguls can definitely build refineries in the quickest time possible as we have been availed with statistics of costs and time frames of similar projects all around the world.
The quickest and biggest way out of all this drama is for Government to build these refineries. It will save all the subsidy money for as many SURE programmes as it wants, the ordinary citizen will buy the product cheaply, all other variable costs of products and services that are affected by the pump price of products will relatively come down, and the tension and suffering of us will finely subside.
Governments international campaigns are adequate enough to bring the investments and provide and enabling environment for the success of the refineries. Those investments would be able to buy back their costs in no time even if it is on a build operate and transfer design. If we refine here, we are fine and there will be no need for trillions to cause puzzles and mysteries that no board on this earth can accurately solve.
Tahir, the Talban Bauchi, wrote from Bauchi