ADAMS, Adeola (2014) Patterns and trend analysis of violence in oil production and oil distribution in Nigeria from 2006 to 2014
Most studies on oil-related violence in Nigeria have unwittingly concentrated research efforts on oil production in the Niger Delta region. An attempt is made in this paper to demonstrate that oil distribution contributes more to fatality than oil production in Nigeria. Using the Nigeria Watch database as the primary source of data, the paper asserts that although the aggregate death figures attributed to the oil sector are lower than cases like road accidents, crime, and political-cum-religious-motivated killing, the number of violent deaths recorded between June 2006 and May 2014 in relation to oil distribution is triple the number related to oil production. While oil distribution accounted for 4,575 deaths, oil production events led to about 1,550 deaths. In addition, oil distribution has more lethal impact on the country than oil distribution. Apart from Kebbi and Zamfara, all the states of the federation have witnessed at least one fatal incidence from oil distribution, whereas oil production cases occur mainly in Anambra, Rivers, Delta, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, and Imo. The reasons are not difficult to understand: oil production is restricted to a few states in the Niger Delta area, while oil distribution activities cover the whole nation. Moreover, oil production deals essentially with crude oil, which is less flammable than the highly inflammable refined products involved in oil distribution. And, of course, oil distribution has a strong link with road accidents, which are rated as one of the main contributors to fatalities in Nigeria. In the final analysis, to understand the pattern and dynamics of fatalities in the oil sector, more research efforts need to be devoted to oil distribution.