The curse phenomenon has always been in existence since time memorial by oil rich nations like Nigeria, Angola, Libya, and Algeria among others but the question is can Ghana escape from it?
Now that oil has been discovered in Ghana, it is a wake-up call on Ghanians that they do justice to the oil bill currently before parliament.
Ghana is not densely populated like some of the oil countries in Africa but the citizens are worried as to what if the oil becomes a curse to the nation since all the nations before us has not escaped this phenomenon.
Since the first commission of the oil on November 15, 2011 where Ghana produced 55,000 barrels daily and its likely to increase in 3 months as we have learnt, Even though Ghana is not the richest country in Africa, the jubilee field is one of the richest oil field in Africa with proven reserves of 1.8 billion barrels making Ghana sub-Saharan Africa’s seventh largest producers.
According to the World Bank, Ghana is likely to receive an annual average of US$ 1 BILLION ASSUMING crude oil prices of US$ 75 per a barrel of oil profile covering a proven reserve of 500 million barrels of crude oil over a20 year field life. This is based on jubilee phase one project. However, with the new discoveries in Owo 1, Dzata 1 and Tweneboah , the country will receive much more.
Now that the money issue is made bare Ghana has a higher responsibility of being efficient and prudent in public spending, citizen participation, transparency and accountability, health and safety the democracy of the country should also be taken in high esteem, it’s based on their democracy that made President Obama choose it to give hid land mark speech “Yes we Can”
Ghana must also check to prevent oil abundance and violent conflict like what happened in places like Nigeria, Angola, and Venezuela as the youth of Jomoro district are doing by agitating against the development of gas infrastructure by the GNPC for fear of their livelihood, and also the demand by the chiefs for 10%.
If the country is able to do all these things as best as they can it will be the first country to break the oil Curse phenomenon and it will be included in the Africa Maritime and Energy (AME) Awards which main objective is to promote better public appreciation and support for the maritime and oil related business I Africa, strengthen corporation and healthy competition amongst players in Africa.
Others that can enjoy from this award night include shipping agent of the year, news maker of the year, and port of the year, best trade facilitation, and Maritime administrator among others
Taking this path will help improve the oil’s protection which will yield massive income for the nation and contribute on its developmental issues. However, this can be achieved by educating some of the citizens to participate in the oil and gas sector as the National Vocational Training Institute (NVTI) is into.-- Mary Wilmot