The acting president, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo has raised the alarm that the oil proceeds not accounted for are being used to fund terrorism activities across the world.
Speaking at the opening of the extra-ordinary meeting of the council of ministers session of the African Petroleum Producers Organization (APPO) in Abuja on Wednesday, Osinbajo said concerted efforts must be made to account for all crude oil that is produced so as to prevent the misuse of the funds.
“Around the world today, we are increasingly seeing crude oil, often of untraceable origins, funding the activities of terrorist groups and other purveyors of violence and conflicts.
“Many of these groups constitute a threat or a potential threat to the safety and security in our member states. APPO, therefore, needs to build the capacity to maintain a reliable statistical database and to deploy technology to track every molecule of crude oil extracted from our territories. This is an important step, not only for global security, but also for fiscal transparency, accountability and of course, the required levels of international collaboration and cooperation that an organisation like APPO is well-placed to muster,” he said.
Osinbajo hinted that the fall in the prices of oil has forced many governments around the world into rethinking the mode of inventing development models that do not rely heavily on crude oil.
“The volatility has triggered much soul-searching and governments are compelled to ask themselves difficult but necessary questions about the present and the future. Besides, the reality of the future, where demands for and revenues from oil drop sharply is already upon us; and almost every major oil importing country today has embarked on an aggressive non-fossil fuel alternative programme. China, Japan and some Scandinavian states have already set dates within the next 10 to 15 years, to produce and use only electric vehicles,” he said.
Osinbajo posited that for oil producing countries to exit recession and other economic challenges foisted by drop in oil prices, they needed the whole range of the petrochemical enterprise and other untapped options for growing industrial opportunities, creating jobs and increasing chances of delivering on national and continental commitment for inclusive growth.
The minister of state for petroleum resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, warned that the world oil community was nearing extinction.
“With the current trends in technology and environmental concerns, it is clear that over the next 20 to 30 years, oil would become a fading, if not a faded, product. The thing is that most countries that still harbour oil and are getting into oil exploration, have only about a 30-year span to harness, explore, find, carry and enjoy the full benefits of oil, because after that, most of the consumers of oil would have moved on to a cleaner source of energy.”
Meanwhile, the group managing director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr Maikanti Baru, said at the meeting that Nigeria had lost 150,000 barrels per day to the nefarious activities of vandals as attacks were launched on the Trans Niger Pipeline in Ogoniland.