What’s our cut in oil, Bill?


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BAK

BAK

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What's our cut in oil, Bill?
Adam Lusekelo
Daily News; Wednesday,July 09, 2008 @08:38

YESTERDAY I sat watching the Minister of Energy and Minerals, Bill Ngeleja, perform in the Bunge. He obviously had been reading and re-reading his budget speech the whole Monday night. Like a good husband and father, he praised his wife and kids for standing by him while he was doing the hard job of being minister. Which is normal. It's not easy to be a minister. You get invited to all those endless parties and all your girlfriends ask for impossible favours. Anyway Bill told Bunge that Tanzania has signed a deal with all those prospecting companies in Bongo. That is very fine.

I know there is oil in Tanzania. It's just a matter of time. What our parliamentarians should ask Bill is to elaborate on the oil take. They should ask him what is our cut when that oil is found. That should be made very clear. What's our cut as a country? Do we go fifty-fifty or what?

You have to ask because there are some crooked bureaucrats quietly signing our country away for personal gain. There are some quiet, selfish monsters that would do that primarily to get a few millions.

We also want to know the names of people who are signing our country away. It is very important we know who signs the dotted lines for our sake, so that we can lynch them when we realise that they have sold us short.

Some guys signed to have us buy a radar system for a highly inflated price. Some guys signed to have a fake company called Richmond that the Tanzanian taxpayer has been painfully chafing under. Bill told parliament that Richmond/Dowans have been kicked out. Fine. But what about the others?

The selfish monsters are everywhere. Nigerian greed is legendary. Some people signed deals with foreign oil companies and those deals are virtually useless. The country, a major, oil producer, has a chronic shortage of fuel. While one can ‘see' the oil in the people of Libya, one can hardly see it in Nigeria.

Nigerians remain impoverished. The River States where the oil comes from are a story of hopeless poverty and pollution.

So now the people of those states have started a guerrilla war to fight for their rights. Criminal gangs have also joined in to get their share of the oil money by kidnapping foreigners. It's nearly total chaos.

All this is happening while the majority live in grinding poverty. A few Nigerians are living scandalously rich lifestyles.

It is not only Nigeria, but you name it, Angola, Gabon and even Equatorial Guinea, where they have fearfully rich plutocracies.

Now what stops Tanzania from turning into a plutocracy? It is now. Bureaucrats are signing Bongo away to what they call ‘investors' and buy radars at ridiculous prices. I am sure that one day we will go at each other's throats. What's our cut in oil revenues Bill? Or is it a secret like everything else? And we talk about transparency.

Mbwene2@yahoo.com
 

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