Buhari : Why He Must Be Oil Minister

Nigeria' s president, Mohammad Buhari, today, formed his cabinet 6 months after assuming office.

The list and various portfolios, as they are called in Nigeria is not different from what were widely speculated in the media.

Mr Buhari has also named himself Minister of petroleum. This has been the rumour for months.

Buhari brings to the job what he 'd consider a wealth of experience. He was oil minister in the 70s.

In 1994, Sani Abacha appointed him the head of the Petroleum Trust Fund.

When he was first minister, he was a young man and a soldier. OPEC, the birth of which he was a member, was a monolith that gave the West orders
.
For instance, during the Yom kimpor War,or the October War, OPEC cut production to make it too expensive for America to support Israel.

The cartel got a lot of money but Israel won the war.

It was also the time General Yakubu Gowon, head of state then, said the problem with Nigeria was not money but how to spend it.

It also dropped the British Pound and created Naira and Kobo.

Angola, Sudan, South Sudan had not "found" oil then. Ghana would be a story in the future.

As minister of oil, Mr Buhari did not save those money. Nigeria had no national investment.
The government decided to create a welfare state via the Udoji Commission. Money was given to workers without recourse to how it will create an inflation.



It created a hyper inflation.

As OPEC still had money, Nigeria hosted Blacks all over the world in what is known as FESTAC.

In 1980, Oil prices crashed and Nigeria has not been the same again.

The  Petroleum Tryst Fund was set up by Abacha to placate the masses who felt soldiers were stealing the nations resources through military rule

Abacha appointed a man whose overthrow he announced. " He is too rigid and uncompromising"
among his many sins.

Today President Buhari is 72 years old.
His experience does not count for the following reasons.

OPEC is dead. When he was first Minister, oil was between $120-30
Today it sells for $47 and Nigeria a civil service larger than that of America.

The Naira too is useless outside Nigeria.  And the country depends on imports.

Today, government and commerce are globalised. One man's opinion does not hold sway.

Today's cosmology requires a person who can make lots of compromises.
The table has truly turned

Unlike the Yom Kimpor War, Nigeria or OPEC is not in a position to tell America anything.

As he takes on the job, plus his not too impressive record as president for the past 6 month, he would do well to learn that things have changed.
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