05 July, 2009

Will the oil in Uganda be a curse?

I don't think so. I very much hope not so. The latest reports say the oil discoveries in Uganda are unquestionably the largest onshore discovery made in sub-Saharan Africa in at least 20 years, possibly ever. And that one might safely consider production in the order of 150,000 barrels a day over a period of 15, 20 or even up to 25 years. In terms of comparison.......Uganda (would) in the top 50 of oil producers in the world.

And this is a report by Al Jazeera on the Ugandan oil:

As exploration and work still continues in the oil fields, so much hope and expectations are being put by Ugandans on the oil discovery. As I said before, the focus now is on how Uganda can both benefit from oil and at the same time take care of its magical, natural wonders. The problem: most of the oil so far discovered in Uganda are in the very environmentally sensitive, Lake Albert region. The priority is that: Uganda, with oil, manages to take care and protect its real wealth: its land, its waters, its wildlife and most of all - its people.

Even without oil, Uganda could and can still develop. With oil, the Ugandan leadership can now find it much easier to move the country and its people forward. Ugandans have suffered much more than most people; and Ugandan leaders owe Ugandans, nothing more than that - whatever is earned from oil, is used constructively and wisely for the benefit of Uganda and all Ugandans. And that's what Ugandan leaders, especially Mr. Museveni, are promising.

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