If you thought oil was discovered in
Nigeria in 1959, you could pass your high school economics with
that information. It was actually discovered 50 years earlier. Did
you know that Oil from the Territory was sold for almost 50 years
before the approach of Independence in 1960 forced the
disclosure of Oloibiri by Britain? Even at that, the quantities were
concealed from the newly Independent Nigerian Governments,
until the Counter Coup of July, 1966, when the North packed their
baggage to head back North in the famous ARABA putsch. The
then British High Commissioner to Nigeria, of course on the
promptings and direction of his home Government, zoomed in
upon Gowon halfway, and prevailed on him to reverse the decision
of moving the North out of Nigeria, at a time Gowon already
hoisted the Arewa Flag in a temporary Capital, Ilorin. In the hurry
to announce this reversal, the Gowon’s speech that was originally
designed to take out the North, was poorly edited, leaving a
portion that should have been expunged and so distorting the
concluding part from the body of the speech. That unexpunged
portion is the celebrated Gowonian faux pas in which he in one
breathe declared that “Everything considered, the basis of
Nigeria’s Unity was no more”, yet going ahead in the next breathe
to proclaim that “To keep Nigeria One is a task that must be
done”. It was in the heat of the ARABA (Northern Secession) move
that the British whispered into the ears of the fledgeling Gowon
Government, the huge quantities oil that Eastern Nigeria would
have, if the North left, and so would become the poor neighbour of
the South, particularly Eastern Region. In a series of dubious
underhanded exchanges that followed rapidly, the British
practically took over the handling of the crises all the way to when
it became War in July 1967, from the poor School Certificate-
holder soldier, Yakubu Gowon (Gowon went for tertiary education
only after he was overthrown in 1975 by his July 1966 comrade-in-
crime, Murtala Mohammed). In that dark period, Gowon signed off
the entire oil/gas reserves of Eastern Nigeria to the British for 50
years, more or less, contracting the War to Britain. The British
which held those concessions via Shell, had to parcel out
substantial blocs of their holdings to the other World Powers and
Permanent Members of the UN Security Council. Thus the entry of
Gulf Oil and Mobil (US) Elf (France), Agip (Italy). Soviet Union had
oil at home and so didnt need oil blocs. What Russia (USSR) got
was an open order to supply the hardware for the War, including
MIG Jet Fighters, Ilushyn Battle Tanks, AK 47 Riffles, all at double
of prevailing market prices. This oil blocs bribe was the basis of
the cooperation of the then World Powers with Britain and its
stooge, Northern Nigeria, to kill 3.5 million Easterners in a simple
Self-determination disputate, substantially resolved in Aburi,
January 1967. Back to Willinks Commission. Could it be because
of the Special love the the British had for the Niger Delta that the
Commission Recommended the preferential accelerated
development of the Area. Dead no. So much had been taken. The
people would soon find out. The Development was an upfront bribe
and containment Strategy to help calm would-be frayed nerves.
Unfortunately, the North-led Government that took over in 1960
from the British, abandoned that proactive scheme (partly because
the whole truth as to the quantities of crude and money involved
was not disclosed to them by the British departing arrangers).
Some of the findings of the LNC on reasons Isaac Boro and his
Niger Delta Peoples Volunteer Force, (yes NDPVF did not begin
with Asari) declared the Defunct Niger Delta Republic, had to do
with this “detail” of British concealments, some of which are still in
force. Those who are still in doubt should find out whether Shell
was not Headquartered in Owerri for 42 solid years up till 1960 in
the place still called Shell Camp to date (now broken into several
large premises’ including the Government House, Rockview Hotel,
Alvan Ikoku College of Education, the Federal Medical Center, the
Mobile Police Camp and a number of other Governmental
institutions). It was Premier Michael Okpara who bought the large
premises off Shell in 1961 on behalf of the the then Eastern
Region, after Shell moved to Port Harcourt in the dawn of this
grand pretence at a distinct Niger Delta that had nothing to do with
Igbo, which has now been confirmed by Junaid Mohammed when
he charged at Jonathan with the rebuke that the Niger Delta was a
creation of the North to manage its interests in Eastern Nigeria!.
Those who wish to interrogate this claim of 50-years-oil-sale-
before-Oloibiri should get on SPDC website so they can see for
themselves that it was in 1936 that a certain Company called Shell
D’Arcy (Shell’s predecessor) came under Crown Regulation, to pay
more to the Crown probably because of the impending Second
World War. Prior to that time, Shell D’Arcy had the same kind of
Charter as the Royal Niger Company (later UAC, UNILEVER).
Those Charters were issued about same period at the turn of the
19th Century, before your Nigeria was created in 1914. Do the
arithmetic. Nigeria was purely a business venture of the British
and everything that became our “Constitution” took their roots
from that Main Object to date”.



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