Peter Obi Presidency: Nigeria’s Redemption Mission as Nigeria Stinks
It is no longer a matter of politics to acknowledge the fact that Nigeria needs redemption; redemption from eminent social, economic, and political decay and possible collapse. A lot of revelations of large scale looting of national, states, and local government councils’ treasuries and systems collapse are pointers to the fact that Nigeria desperately needs clinical surgery for it to be redeemed from the ravageous human-vermin eating deep and deeper into its fabrics of existence.
As the Labour Party Presidential candidate, Mr Peter Obi revealed in Houston, USA, during his interaction with the Nigerian in the diaspora on Nigeria oil mega theft said to have “triggered grave concern in several US cities”‘ he made the following claims:
“… out of all the OPEC countries, only Nigeria was not meeting its supply quota while other countries were angling for more (except Venezuela due to sanctions).
” In July Nigeria did not supply 717,000 barrels per day out of its 1.8 million bdp quota. This”, as reported, “amounted to lost of revenue of $22,227,000 daily at the rate of $110 per barrel which in a month totaled $2.4 billion… using the exchange rate of N550, this amounted to in excess of one trillion (naira) lost in the month of July alone…. Yet… N1. 6 trillion was Nigeria’s Jan – Apr. income while it incurred N4 trillion expenditure resulting in over N3 trillion deficit “. The Labour Party presidential candidate saw this as not emanating from only oil bunkering but ” ‘Official stealing’ not just by ships in territorial waters”.
Other revelations also came from highly placed Nigerians working in global oil industries outside the country. One of them, a retired Nigerian American oil executive and engineer said in the Houston meeting, “… what is going on in Nigeria only super tankers or trawlers have the capacity for the ‘industrial scale oil theft'”
Another Nigerian American said in Washington in a similar diaspora meeting with Peter Obi, that, “… during the COVID lockdown, Nigeria was still recording high amounts of fuel subsidy payments”, noting that “the published figures were low but the actual logged and paid amounts on the records were high”
As reported, he went further to reveal that, “… a ship bearing petroleum would dock at the port but not discharge its cargo, then sail out and return in the same week under a different name and thereby double bill subsidy payments for the same cargo”.
It is also reported of the US Nigeria Law Group which had revealed an incidence of past two decades when a US ambassador revealed seeing ships stealing oil in the Niger Delta waters as he flew in helicopter over the region.
The report alleged that oil stolen from Nigeria are sold in far away America, adding that the former president, Dr Goodluck Jonathan had made a case to the then president of the United States of America, Barack Obama, to help in stopping the oil theft in Nigeria and that “… Jonathan lamented that the report submitted by the consultant Obama dispatched to the Niger Delta was watery and no more than bar gossip”.
The report also cites a Benue born oil executive in Houston to have said, “… while there’s official stealing, the fact remains that security forces are also engaged in surreptitious criminality as well”.
The saddening aspect of Nigerian government docility and myopic approach to the oil business is in such situations as reported about the arrest of a Norwegian ship caught stealing oil in Nigeria. “Norway’s Sovereign Wealth Fund exceeds $1 trillion while Nigeria’s Sovereign Wealth Fund is about $2 Billion (around 2%less). This shows the incapacity and cluelessness in navigating the Nigerian ship of State towards achieving the goals of government and governance.
It is therefore fait accompli to seek for the redemption of Nigeria while the nation is still breathing for survival, and that makes the coming of Peter Obi wins popularity among segments of the country across parties, religions and ethnic blocs, who truly mean well for the country and wish it a speedy recovery. Nigeria cannot afford to fail getting it right in 2023, as the dangers ahead loom with unwholesome consequences.
(Offong Okodio is a priest in The Temple of Justice where Truth is the presiding Judge)