GENERAL DISCUSSION

RESOURCE CONTROL

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  • #2489
    walewale
    Keymaster

    Resource control is another issue of grave concern in the country. A Game Changer ideal is that for the nation to move forward, there must be sense of ownership of resources in the land.

    Plundering one region to salvage the poverty of another should not be the thinking of a federal system. You cannot heal the poverty of a region by taking from another, instead you are brewing more indolence and the final state of poverty of the weaker region will be worse. A poor man can only be transformed by a new thinking of possibility and industry; a belief in self that he has what is required to make a new desirable world for himself.

    I so much believe in resource control of regions and contribution to the central government from time to time. I am saying this from the insight that no state, tribe or region is actually poor. The poverty we have in many parts is a reflection of failure to look inward, homeward and to the abundant resources in each ones domain.

    Our situation is compounded by our leaders and citizens propensity for quick money which crude oil readily offers. To this I will say: our possession of crude oil will turn to a curse if we refuse to harness other potential resources. There should be a balanced contribution of resources to the center. Why should the leaders be too lazy to think and sweat out the desirable outcome of greatness and why would every citizen wait on crude oil revenue without personal contribution to the nation’s growth?

    If one region is responsible for the supply of 90 percent of a nation’s income, this may breed dissatisfaction overtime which if not corrected, may lead to serious state of anarchy. But if a region is supplying 90 percent to the federation account for the purpose of using these resources to harness wealth from other regions in order to yield a multiplying effect on a growing economy, all the parties involved will be happy about this. But this is not the case in Nigeria, ours is a consumerist nation where everybody brings his own knife to cut from the “national cake”.

    This analogy will make it simple enough to grab. I may be magnanimous enough to help a poor young graduate for a while; feed him, clothe him and cater for his needs. But a time will come that I will expect him to be empowered enough to fend for himself. If he wants to continue living freely on my income, we may end up with fallout because eventually, my income will not be eternally available for his free use. In the same way, a country should not expect her vast resources to come from one section for years and expect peaceful coexistence.

    For effective national rebranding, we should drift more towards resource control by sections and regions of the nation. In the new rebranding, there should be a conscious motivation for individual and regional discoveries where every side comes to the center table with a valuable contribution in terms of resources. In a business relationship, every partner has something to offer.

    When you share goods equally between the strong and the weak you end up creating further weakness in the latter.

    A professor proved this in one of his classes. In his first test everyone earned their respective mark based on merit. Before the next test he told them that henceforth, he would average their scores, meaning everyone would score the same average mark. The outcome was that the result favoured the poor students and they were happy about this while the brilliant students were not happy. In the third test the class average was a failure because everybody relaxed; no reward and motivation for hard work.

    The professor thereby concluded that any economy that does not reward merit will go downward over time until the reward system is adjusted to capture a merit ground.

    What resource control means is that a person who produces more should have more control on what he produces but by the time you give back a fraction to a region that produces a resources in the name of Federal Character or whatever you call it, you are breeding a monster of acrimony which will be unleashed someday.

    Resource control is not a means to empower one region over the other; it is about following a natural order of things wherein one becomes fair in dealings and giving what is due to Caesar to Caesar. It is about equitable responsibility to the joint project called Nigeria. This is about each divide discovering self and becoming a contributor instead of being parasitic to the detriment of the health of the nation.

    Resource control is about fostering competitive advantages among regions and creating an enterprising society whereby every region will use what it has to create wealth.

    Japan cannot measure up with the abounding natural resources we have here in Nigeria yet they were able to create a surplus economy from her lean natural resources. Israel likewise was planted on a barren land when compared to our dear country yet was blessed and wealthy beyond measure. What are they doing that we failed to do?

    In the final estimate, the level of human capital development will determine the extent of economic transformation of a nation. Leaders who embezzle are not well developed in their mind. Militants who blow power stations and oil pipelines are enemies to growth, no matter the justification. There can’t be any justification for such barbarism.

    Religious extremist who level cities and soak the land with blood of innocent women and children are detrimental to economic growth. Together, these classes are poorly developed human minds.

    The real rebranding will put into consideration the development of the minds to embrace only patterns that enhance economic growth.

    The emphasis remains: with human capital development every region has something to offer. Human capital development is more than going to school; it is more about integrating individuals to become contributors to national growth.

    With a perverted mind, a professor could be injurious through wrong use of his knowledge, a judge can interpret the law to suit his selfish cause and a religion’s leader could rear a devil’s sect. Elitism has less to do with the transformation of an economy like having the right mind. Nigerians are one of the most educated nations of the world, but we are cultured with the wrong mindset which makes our educational knowledge to be applied in the wrong direction that supports retrogression. There are two sides to education as we have two sides to a coin. Education can build and it can destroy: education brought about the internet, nuclear power, and genetic engineering, all these have been abused by certain educated fellows to bring down the world value system as regard use of the internet, blowing up of cities as in nuclear power plant and breeding biological weapons using genetic engineering.

    Yet if we chose to use our minds constructively, we can turn a desert into a world class tourist attraction.
    Instead of fighting over resource control especially at the central government, let us unleash the minds of Nigerians to use what they have to bring the nation to prosperity and prominence among other nations of the world. The journey of a prosperous nation starts with the individual. And when the individuals begin to excel and regions begin to appreciate in wealth and the government is not a burden to them rather give them control and help them to protect the reward of their labour and resources, they will be glad to put in all their energy. When people are aware they are the custodian of their own prosperity, they will readily work harder to create more.

    How should the government earn? It should be more through taxes, levies and royalties.

    It may look unwise at the initial stage to cede resource control back to regions, states and individuals but by so doing you will be stabilizing the society and creating more wealth for the individual citizens, states, regions and ultimately the nation.

    Government’s primary responsibility is administration and governance; creation of wealth is her secondary function. Government should have no concern with resource control or doing business rather it should be contented with earning revenues through fair dealings. Government should cease from robbing Peter to pay Paul, instead teach Paul how to earn his own income and contribute meaningfully to the common partnership.

    Having taken a look at some major prejudices and sentiments that have halted the nation’s advancement, we need to brace up, drop the cloak of hypocrisy and pretense. Now, we all know the real debacle to national preeminence – I mean the already discussed sentiments. If any government leader is really desirous of growth, change and transformation they would need to look on how to put a check to such sentiments as corruption, religious sentiments, tribal or ethnic prejudices, and resource control.

    If Nigeria wants to rise to the top in global dealings, governance has to be exercised without sentiments instead with fairness and equity to all.

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