The Northern socio-political organization, the Arewa Consultative Forum, has challenged the National Assembly to commence a probe to verify the claim that 83 per cent of the nation’s oil blocs were owned by Northerners.
In a statement released by the ACF yesterday, the organization said it was shocked by the claim made by Senator Ita Enang (PDP, Akwa Ibom North-East) on the floor of the Senate on Wednesday, when given a recent Forbes Magazine publication, majority of the 11 Nigerian billionaires on its list of Richest Men in Africa were Southerners.
It pointed out that the only Northerner on the list was Alhaji Aliko Dangote, who did not make his money from oil.
The ACF, in the statement which was signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Anthony Sani, responded further, “Given the important constitutional provisions that access to all national resources be equitable and conform with provisions for federal character, ACF wishes to appeal to the National Assembly to investigate the allegations and publish the distribution of oil blocs according to state together with their volume and from which dates. Or the Federal Government should institute a commission of inquiry to establish the veracity or otherwise of such allegations.”
“ACF is alarmed by the allegations because it is not long ago that the Forbes magazine said eleven Nigerians are now on the list, and that all of them-except Dangote who is a manufacturer-owe their riches to oil. The North had fewer of the rich Nigerians on the list than the South.”
“We believe knowledge of the correct position of things will help in improving the equitable management of oil blocs in accordance with provisions of the federal character for performance and public good.”