(By T. Y.)
“So, the vultures are going in ? ” is a slip made by a BBC announcer on the news of oil companies going in to Libya after the fall of Mohammed Gadhafi .
The news that oil has been found in the Ogaden region has been going on for some time. As the late Prime Minister Meles Zenawi had once pointed out oil ,in Ethiopia, can be a sign of a blessing or a curse.
Yes we need the oil. Our main energy resource is hydropower followed by other renewable resources. The growth and stability of our energy system depends on how much of the hydropower and other renewable resources, that we have, can be harnessed quickly and efficiently to assist the so much needed economic and social growth of the country . The blessings of any oil resource in Ethiopia are much sought for the country in terms of bringing the coveted financial gains and addressing the energy demand of the country.
The global debate on climate change, the return on investment ( ROI) and energy return on energy invested (EROI) for different energy resources is going on with much focus being made on the globally depleting oil resources . Regardless of these ongoing considerations of replacing hydrocarbon fuel sources by renewable resources, the developed and advanced developing countries have shown, in practice, their choice of the conventional fuel sources over the renewable resources so as to sustain and advance their global position.
The quest for newer and efficient technologies to harness renewable energy resources is out paced by the quest for new reserves for hydrocarbon fuel sources.
This “survival of the fittest” hunt for oil resources is relentless. It is aimed at maiming or destroying whatever lies between the predators and their pursuit. This is the curse of oil resources. We have seen the spell working in so many countries. South Sudan, is the most recent and closer example.
The human rights activists, the humanitarian organizations and the media have been circling Ethiopia like vultures getting ready to take up the meat. Just as the Amharic saying “ሊበሉዋት የፈለጉዋትን አሞራ ጅግራ ይሉዋታል” they have been turning blind eyes to ongoing progresses in the country and labeling situations in their artful language. As seen in other countries there are those that fall for these deviously concocted baits. The greedy and egocentric enter the trap because of their insatiable appetite. The naive and trusting get tricked by the provocations. The result is the obvious, seen widely in our continent.
So the million dollar question of the day is “what do we need to do to stop the vultures from descending?”
*The author, with the pen name T. Y., is a guest blogger in this blog. He can be reached at [email protected].