Authorization to board Nigerien oil: All that for that!

Authorization to board Nigerien oil: All that for that!
Authorization to board Nigerien oil: All that for that!

From May 6 to May 15, 2024. The decision to block Nigerien oil only lasted 9 days. Certainly, it is fortunate for the two peoples who share centuries-old bonds of brotherhood and friendship.

But given the seriousness of the tone with which the Head of State announced the decision and all the commotion that followed, we expected a standoff that would last over time and which, for its outcome, would have required diplomatic missions to Niamey, mediation by political or neutral figures from both countries. But none of that.

It was necessary, according to the declarations of the Beninese Minister of Mines, for Nigerien customs to send a note to Beninese customs stipulating the willingness of Nigerien executives to participate together with Beninese executives in oil loading and transport operations, as planned. by the agreements, so that Benin agrees to lift the blockade on Nigerien oil. Of course, it is said that it is a one-off and provisional decision which should open the way for trade between the two States.

Benin is thus demonstrating its good faith, despite everything that has been said to reinforce Patrice Talon’s position. And that’s where it hurts. Upon analysis, we have the feeling that the decision was not well thought out. And those who should lead the government to properly assess the scope of its decision have responded to the emotion aroused by the words of the Prime Minister of Niger. Should Benin use the border closure as an excuse to ignore the clauses of an agreement concluded when the junta was not in power? That’s the right question.

But who asks it? Apart from the Opposition parties who clearly said that this was not the right option and who made recommendations for a rapid exit from the crisis, on the side of power, we were content to applaud the decision of the head of state, without even exploring avenues for a way out of the crisis. As a result, this backpedaling occurred yesterday, Wednesday May 15, 2024, like many other decisions taken by the Rupture government since 2016.

M.M.

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