It is all right for Afenifere, the all-Yoruba interest group, to warn that “no inch of Yoruba land” will be ceded to the Chinese if the Federal Government of Nigeria goes a-borrowing from China under the inserted penalty-clause that loan-repayment default shall be compensated for by conceding key national assets, exclusive of military installations and diplomatic missions. But Yoruba “land” has already been ceded to the Chinese if Nigeria has accessed that line of credit by now.
What the Chinese really want from Nigeria is not necessarily Southwestern onshore and hinterland assets; who in their right minds desire the open-defecation infested land areas of Osun and Ekiti States? Their interest would be in the maritime waters offshore the southern extremities of Nigeria that are rich in oil and gas.
Apparently, it is Nigeria’s offshore hydrocarbon resource basin that the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led Federal Government is ceding to the Chinese in exchange for loan facilities. Now, if a self-governing entity called “Oduduwa Republic” pops up in response to agitation on account of the issue of flawed federalism (“contra-restructuring”) and the denial of a much-desired shot at the presidency in 2023, then from a geological standpoint, “millions of inches” of Yoruba land would have been ceded to the Chinese before 2023 because the body of water offshore Lagos is actually submerging a landed continental shelf and a plunging continental slope further out into the zone that would constitute the maritime boundary of this Oduduwa Republic.
Sunday Adole Jonah
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