The problem in the Niger Delta borders on who controls the oil wealth. The Federal Government that controls the oil sector could not solve the consequential problems facing the region due to the nature and character of the Nigerian state, as well as the asymmetrical capital and technological relationship between the multinational oil companies and the Nigeria government. In 2009, the government of President Yar’ Adua introduced amnesty programme in which militants in the Niger Delta were given an opportunity to surrender their arms so as to reduce the unrest in the region and accelerate economic development of Nigeria. In return for accepting the amnesty offer, the Federal Government embarked on a number of activities aimed at rehabilitating, demobilizing and reintegrating the ex-militants. This study, therefore, investigates the impact of oil politics on the implementation of the Amnesty programme. Utilizing the Marxian political economy theory, survey and documentary methods, and content analysis, the study noted that the implementation of disarmament programme has led to the increase in oil production in Nigeria. The study also observed that the implementation of demobilization programme has enhanced security situation in the Niger Delta. The study recommends, among others, that the Federal Government should endeavour to establish National Minorities Commission and the Niger Delta Infrastructure Intervention Development Fund to complement the implementation of the Amnesty programme.
By geo-political definition, the Niger Delta comprises six states of the South-South namely: Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, Edo, and Rivers; and three others - Ondo (South Western Nigeria), Abia and Imo States (South East). Together, these states are referred to as oil producing states. The region is blessed with a large concentration of oil deposits, fertile agricultural land, forest, rivers, creeks and coastal waters teaming with fish and sundry water creatures. There are no fewer than 19 oil companies producing from about 150 oil fields, ninety percent of which is domiciled in Niger Delta (Okonta & Douglas, 2001).
Since the discovery of oil in commercial quantity by Shell in Olobiri, a community in the present day Bayelsa State in 1956, revenue from the sale of oil mined in the Niger Delta region is said to account for “95 percent of the country’s foreign exchange earnings and about one-fourth of her gross domestic products” (Okonta & Douglas, 2001, p. 18). On account of this, Nigeria was ranked the world’s twelfth biggest producer of crude oil, and one of the leading crude oil producers in Africa (EIA, 2009).
In the light of the foregoing, it was expected that oil exploration and exploitation would bring economic prosperity to the region. Unfortunately, it appears to have brought a curse instead of economic prosperity to the people of the region. According to Ibeanu and Luckdham (2006) Niger Delta has remained one of the most impoverished and underdeveloped part of the country with 70 percent of the inhabitants still living a rural and subsistent existence characterized by a total absence of such basic infrastructural facilities as pipe borne water, accessible roads. Ibeanu and Luckdham further observed that the people of the region have persistently suffered from debilitating poverty, malnutrition and diseases, within their environment, which constitute their major source of livelihood, negatively affected by the incessant excessive oil spillage. Rather than development, oil exploration and exploitation has deepened poverty and undermined development in the region. Exploitation of crude oil and natural gas in the Niger Delta has equally caused irredeemable ecological devastation to the Niger Delta land over the years.
Download the rest of the work from the link below the references
CBN (2015). CBN Statistical Bulletin 2015. Abuja: CBN
Economics Institute of the Academy of Sciences (EIAS). (1954). Political economy. London: Lawrence & Wishart.
Energy Information Administration (EIA) (2009). Energy information administration. www.eia.doe.gov. Retrieved on 27/09/2018.
Gardner, B. A. (2009). Blacks law dictionary (9th Ed.) West: St. Paul, MN.
Ibeanu, O., & Luckham, R. (2006). Political violence, governance and corporate responsibility in a petro-state. Abuja: Center for Democracy and Development Publications.
Ifesinachi, K., & Azom, S. N. (2012). US government unilateral diplomacy and militarism in the Middle East. ANSU Journal of Peace and Development Studies, 1 (1), 19-32.
Ikelegbe, A. & Umukoro, N. (2014). The Amnesty Programme and the resolution of the Niger Delta crisis: Progress, challenges and prognosis. Benin City: Centre for Population and Environmental Development (CPED) Monograph series No. 14.
Ikelegbe, A. (2010) Oil, resource conflicts and the post conflict transition in the Niger Delta region: Beyond the amnesty. Benin City: Centre for Population and Environmental Development (CPED) Monograph Series, No. 3.
International Crisis Group (2006). Fuelling the Niger Delta Crisis. Africa Report No. 118.
Lawal, M. O., & Ese, T. C. (2012). Environmental impact of pipeline vandalism on the Nigerian landscape: The case of the Niger Delta region. Kamala-Raj (Journal of Ecology), 39 (1), 73-84.
Lysias (2010). Youth militancy, amnesty and security in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria. In V.
Ojakorotu & G. D. Lysias (Eds.), Checkmating the resurgence of oil violence in the Niger Delta of Nigeria (pp. 51-70). Johannesburg, South Africa. Retrieved January 7, 2017, from http://www.iags.org/Niger_Delta_book.pdf
Meler, R.; Roundfree, J., & Schaefer, M. (n.d). Oil shock: Energy supply and demand…past, present and future. http://www.obeleoil.com. Retrieved on 29/11/17.
Nezam, T. & Marc, A. (2009). Disarmament, demobilization and reintegration. Social development department working paper, No. 119. Conflict, crime, and violence. Washington, DC: World Bank. Retrieved from http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/7768314 68324547527/ Disarmament-demobilization-and-reintegration. Retrieved on 29/11/17.
Nikitin, P. I. (1983). The fundamental of political economy. Moscow: Progress Publishers.
Nnoli, O. (1986). An introduction to politics. Enugu: Fourth Dimension.
Nigeria National Petroleum Commission (NNPC) (2009). Quarterly Report, 2 (2).
NNPC (2012). Annual Statistical Bulletin. A Publication of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, (NNPC), Abuja.
Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation [NNPC] (2014). 2014 Annual Statistical Bulletin. NNPC Abuja.
NOSDRA (2013). Oil Spill Report. Abuja: NOSDRA.
Ojakorotu, V., & Gilbert, L. D. (2010). Understanding the context of oil violence in the Niger Delta of Nigeria. In V. Ojakorotu & L. D. Gilbert (Eds.), Checkmating the resurgence of oil violence in the Niger Delta of Nigeria. http://www.iaags.org/Niger_ Delta_book.Pdf. Retrieved on 23/04/2018.
Okoli, A. C, & Orinya, S. (2013). Oil pipeline vandalism and Nigeria’s national security. Global Journal of Human Social Science (F: Political Science), 13(5:1.0), 67-75.
Okonta, I., & Douglas, O. (2001). Where vultures feast: Shell, human rights and oil in the Niger Delta. San Francisco: Sierra Club Books.
Omadjohwoefe, O. S. (2011). Amnesty initiative and the dilemma of sustainable development in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria. Journal of Sustainable Development, 4 (4).
Omokhoa, I. M (2015). Amnesty programme in Nigeria: Understanding justice and equity in Niger Delta region. International Journal of Public Administration and Management Research (IJPAMR), 3(2):39-51. http://www.rcmss.com. Retrieved on 12/06/2017.
Onuoha, G. (2008) Contextualising the proliferation of small arms and light weapons in Nigeria's Niger Delta” Africa Security Review, 15(2).
Osaghae, E.O., Ikelegbe, A., Olarinmoye, O. & Okhomina, S. (2011). Youth militias, self-determination and resource control struggles in the Niger Delta Region of Nigeria. Research Report, Consortium for Development Partnership Module 5, Leiden.
Quinn, J. (2012). A definition of amnesty. www.usconservatives.about.com/ bio/justin-Quinn-33020.htm. Retrieved 23/09/2018.
Sofiri, J., Doug, P., & Watts, M. (2012). Rethinking conflict in the Niger Delta: Understanding conflict dynamics, justice and security. Working Paper No. 26.
Technical Committee on the Niger Delta (TCND) (2008). Quarterly Report. 1(1).
Tessier, K. (2009). Reverse order chronology from Jan 2009: Conflict in the Niger Delta region. In R. Synge (Ed.), Institute of strategic studies- armed conflict database. London: Europa World Plus.
Ukiwo, U. (2011). The Nigerian state, oil and the Niger Delta crisis. In C. Obi & A. Rustad (Eds.), Oil and insurgency in the Niger Delta: Managing the complex politics of petro-violence. London: Zed Books.
United Nations (2014). Operational guide to the integrated disarmament, demobilization and reintegration standards (IDDRS). Washington: United Nations.
United Nations (2005). Note by the Secretary-General on Administrative and Budgetary Aspects of the Financing of UN Peacekeeping Operations.” A/C.5/59/31, May 24.
Watts, M. (2008). The role of oil: Petro-politics and the anatomy of insecurity. Conference Proceedings, International Conference on the Nigerian State, Oil and the Niger Delta, Organized by the Department of Political Science, Niger Delta University, Wilberforce Island, March 11-13.