May 22, 2012 § 1 Comment
Oil theft, or bunkering, in the Delta is making headlines the past few days for a variety of reasons. Most recently, the governor of Bayelsa State has called for the legalization of bunkering, accusing foreign oil companies of masterminding the destructive trade, stating:
““Our people are not sophisticated enough to go into high-level bunkering. The bunkerers are not here. In the whole oil industry, how many Ijaw people are lifting oil? To address the poverty that is so endemic among our people, there should be licences for bunkering. The Ijaw man is not yet emancipated economically. The fight is not over, we must be economically liberated. There is a thin line between economy and power. They complement each other. My brothers and sisters, let us unite. We should obtain licences for bunkering.”
It’s an interesting thought exercise – could legalization and controlled licenses be utilized to help people in the region, or if nothing else, at least let the population take advantage of the resource that has destroyed their land? Probably, in theory.