By #Ben Bruce
By personal choice and discipline, I act and think on the basis that I am first a Nigerian, before I am from the #Niger Delta.
It is on that basis that I want to urge stake holders to not only take action on the #Petroleum Industry Bill, but to take the appropriate action.
This long suffering region has developed other geo-political zones while remaining under developed.
As such, we all should be very considerate with the PIB and be cautious when taking action so we do not set up a chain reaction that might have unintended consequences.
The PIB made provision for the benefit of the whole nation of Nigeria and went ahead to make an extra provision for the people of the Niger Delta as ‘Host Communities’.
This is in furtherance of natural justice and in keeping with global practice in America, Norway, Venezuela and other nations with indigenous populations within areas of oil exploration.
It would be very insensitive then for such provisions to be wiped away by a redefinition of the term ‘Host Communities’.
Let no one think that I am saying this because of the Niger Delta. A person having such thoughts would not know me. I am making this advocacy because of Nigeria.
In the Niger Delta and beyond, I have acquired the reputation of a nationalist and there are others who are moderates.
However, there are others who are not as mature in their perception and who may react to such moves in ways and manner that may not advance the economic interest of Nigeria.
We should be very careful not to empower such people by taking action that would make people at the grass roots begin to listen to their ideologies.
A prudent nation foresees situations that might cause friction and avoids such.
I am appealing to Nigeria to be prudent and circumspect with the PIB as befits a nation that is the #largest economy in Africa and her giant in the sun.
God bless Nigeria.
Ben Murray Bruce, is a media mogul and #Senator-elect
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