Revenue from the oil and gas sector has been identified as the cause of corruption and conflicts in Nigeria.
This conclusion was drawn by several key speakers including the United Kingdom Deputy High Commissioner in Nigeria, Mr. Peter Carter and Head of the United Nation’s Global Compact (UNGC), Ms. Olajobi Makinwa, at a dialogue on the extractive industry held in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, yesterday.
Speakers at the one-day workshop, entitled: ‘Extractive Industry Dialogue on Corruption,’ organised by the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG) in collaboration with the UNGC, urged Nigerians to exploit existing legislatures, including the Freedom of Information Act to demand answers on revenue and expenditure from their government.
Mr. Carter noted that oil and gas mining can deliver transformational change, not only in Nigeria, but also all over the world, if revenues are judiciously utilised for the good of the people.
He said: “Last year, Nigeria’s oil export is over total net aids to the whole of Sub-Saharan Africa. “Giving information about the sale and purchase of these valuable natural resources is vital to ensure that they are properly managed and to build open economies and society.
“As we all know today, if people can see how much their governments receive from selling the resources that rightly belong to them, they can question how that money is being spent.”
Ms. Makinwa, Head, Transparency and Anti-Corruption Initiatives of the UNGC, said: “Huge revenues from these industries have often fuelled corruption, economic stagnation, inequality, conflict and so on.”
She lamented that while oil multinational companies continue to record global profits, governments in resource-rich nations, such as Nigeria struggle to stay solvent. Read more