Renewed onshore/offshore dichotomy debate rattles Nigerian govt

23 August 2012, Sweetcrude, ABUJA – NIGERIA’s Federal Government has expressed worry over recent, renewed debate on the onshore/offshore abrogation law, saying the debate is
mischievous and is aimed at causing disaffection among the people.

“Some of the pronouncements are disruptive, outrightly mischievous, and aimed at causing disaffection,” the government said in a statement by Dr. Reuben Abati, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity.

“The Presidency strongly advises such politicians to desist from playing up sectional and ethnic sentiments, over a matter that was addressed eight years ago to the benefit of all parties concerned.”

The statement was an obvious response to calls by governors from Nigeria’s northern states for an abrogation of the existing law, a development that would remove a chunk of Nigeria’s offshore oil resources from the coastal states and make it available to the Federation Account for all the states of the federation to share.

The presidency described the situation as an attempt by some politicians to heat up the polity at a time when the government was working hard to resolve security challenges in parts of the country.

“Those who are issuing threats and counter-threats over every issue, are obviously not just re-inventing a controversy, they seem determined to fuel acrimony and needless conflict,” it said.

Governors from the northern states have recently been complaining about the onshore/offshore dichotomy, urging that the matter must be revisited.

About the Author