By Maazi Obinna Agommuo
Executor Director, ESGADIA- Economic Strategic Growth And Development Initiative of Africa.
Nigeria is a country awash with Natural Mineral Resources that if properly harnessed, Nigeria can become a Lender and not a borrower Nation.
The irony is that so far, Nigerians don’t know the monetary value of the estimated mineral reserves across the country.
The Federal Government of Nigeria, therefore, should take the bold step to engage consultants to put monetary values on the Mines so far discovered in Nigeria. When this is carried out, Nigerians would be shocked as to the value of what is hidden in the belly of the most populous Afrikan Nation, yet what many refer to as the “poverty capital of the world” called Nigeria.
If a 3 Cadastre unit (60 hectares) of Granite rock in one corner in Abuja was estimated by a certified Quantity surveyor to worth over 1 billion United States Dollars @ $3.75 (N1350) per ton, then one wonders what the estimate of our Gold, Iron ore, Limestone, Coal, Bitumen, Gemstones, Granite, Gypsum, Calcite, Barite, Bentonite, Tourmaline etc across the length and breadth of Nigeria would be. I can assure Nigerians, Nigeria mines put together is worth over 50 trillion dollars and yet our people are dying of hunger and poverty. Our Youths are willing to die in the Mediterranean Sea and the Sahara Desert in quest of greener pastures overseas.
I think the so-called Oil and Gas has blinded us so much that all we see and dream is Oil with pipelines running through our bedrooms, so we wake up to fetch and take to the market to sell and we have become bad influence to other Afrikan countries who now feel that without oil they can not develop. But thank God for the likes of H.E Paul Kagame who has proven that it can be done irrespective of the existence of Oil and Gas rich reserves.
Like Prof. PLO Lumumba would say we fight over crumbs that are under the table while the main dish is on the Dinner table.
Our Mineral deposits are the main dish, not the Oil and Gas we struggle over but fortunately, Nigeria has them all so what’s is our problem?
Nigerians, therefore, demand to know the monetary value of all the Mines put together and I can assure us, every Nigerian youth would want to stay here in Nigeria, stay here in Afrika to explore these mining potentials.
Nigeria and indeed Afrika should be unveiled to our youths to understand that the pasture is greener here in Africa.