Experts from the Niger Delta region have decried the inadequate infrastructural development in the region, saying it was due to the mismanagement of funds and embezzlement.
According to the experts, there is a long over-stretched injustice to the region over oil and gas exploration, exploitation or expropriation of petroleum resources.
The experts spoke at the 6th Annual International Conference of International Association of Research Scholars and Administrators.
They maintained that the failure of the government development initiatives in the region since 1961 could be attributed to organisational structure, political gratification, inadequate planning, excessive demands on the Commission and inadequate funding.
The failure of the government development initiatives in the region since 1961 could be attributed to organisational structure, political gratification, inadequate planning, excessive demands on the Commission and inadequate funding.
In a communiqué released after the conference, the experts noted among others that marginalisation and youth restiveness are enormous, the industrial-scale oil theft represents doom to the Nigerian economy as the losses are between 6% and 10% of its annual oil production.
“On oil theft, factors militating against combating it were listed as perception and resource control issues, profitability, the proliferation of arms, legal hindrance, military inadequacies, geographical factor, poverty, limited development impact.
“…Niger Delta with the coastal line of about 853 km has the potential for the generation of electricity via the use of offshore wind turbines,” the communiqué stated.
The experts also urged the government to fund research into the domestication of gas utilization technologies and to put measures in place not only to monitor or capture oil theft situations but to apprehend and prosecute perpetrators of the illegal act.
Meanwhile, the event was tagged “Promoting Sustainability in Petroleum Development and Economic Growth in the Niger Delta Region,” and hosted By Emerald Energy Institute, University Of Port Harcourt.
The two-day event brought together notable international researchers and industry experts across sectors, to share their experiences, perspectives, insights, and the latest innovative research in petroleum development, economic growth, security, social and welfare development and environmental sustainability to improve decision making in Nigeria.
The conference was also attended by the 9th Vice-Chancellor of the University of Port Harcourt, Prof. Owunari .A. Georgewill; HRH (Dr.) Appolus Chu, Oneh-eh Nchia & Egere Emere Okori Eleme Kingdom; the 7th Vice-Chancellor of the University of Port Harcourt, Prof. J.A. Ajienka; the former President of Nigerian Bar Association, Chief O.C.J. Okocha, and a host of others.