Any secret agenda on SONARA?

EDITORIAL 10 Jun 2020
Any secret agenda  on SONARA?

Waiting for too long, precisely one year after, on the fate of the national refining company SONARA, after a shocking explosion, is no longer what should be taken lightly. Besides the fact that four production units of the refinery were left in ruins by the explosion, and a permanent silence is being maintained on the issue, makes room for guesses that ultimately evolve into rumours. In which case, such rumours most often become the truth. Of course, there are many at the moment, one of which is spreading fast that, there is a secret agenda to transfer the refinery from Limbe to Kribi.
However, in our traditional way of responding to guesses and rumours such as this, we are always reluctant to embrace them. Reason being that, we have tried to look far and wide, without being able to find any justification for such an unpopular decision to be taken by government in the first place. Rumours and guesses apart, there is a very pertinent unanswered question. It is obvious that in situations such as the SONARA explosion, the first curiosity that engages the mind, which people will want to be certain of, is to know the cause of the explosion.
In our context of situation in the country today, the first suspicion will no doubt be directed to separatist fighters. This will obviously be followed by other possibilities of technical faults, old machines, etc. Fortunately, Prime Minister Dion Ngute was immediately assigned to follow up and a fact-finding commission was set up to look primarily into the causes of the explosion. The findings were to produce the exact cause of the fire. But if after one year nothing is being heard from those who had been assigned to the job of producing findings, it can only surprise those who might be strangers to our culture of dumping into dust bins, what the general public would badly want to know.
For instance, in the course of the commission’s mission to find out the facts, it was gathered that five technical directors were detained as the investigations proceeded. Why these technical directors were detained only added fuel to the rumour machine, while the future of the county’s only refinery was becoming more and more unpredictable. If therefore rumours that there are plans to transfer the refinery from Limbe to Kribi will one day prove to be true, it is only then shall we be justified to pass judgment on such a decision. For the time being, we want to believe it still remains in its rumour parkage.
For one thing, it is believed, according to estimates, that the cost of replacing the damaged production units will be enormous. We wonder how much more it will cost to start constructing or transferring the entire refinery to another site in Kribi. However, all we wish is that this should never happen. We are certain it will satisfy the scheming of some personalities at the top of the ruling class, but we also see it as a very unpopular political decision that is likely to plunge the country into even more difficult times. What is obvious is that government’s treasury is empty, no matter how much they try to hide the truth. The other obvious alternative at their disposal is to go out for hard negotiations to secure the necessary funding, in addition to what we have already engaged in other similar projects.
We however want to use this opportunity to warn against over borrowing. It is not the best option for a country that looks forward towards its avowed emergence. We must not forget that we have the Anglophone crisis burning in our hands, yet without a way forward for lasting solution. Let us not also forget the current threat of COVID-19, which is not the world’s number one enemy. Our capability to contain it or even stop it is still not in our favour, with rising cases of those already contracted, as well as the rising death rate. Let us be prudent in our calculations. Times are becoming more and more difficult for anyone to think that all will be well without looking back at our errors.

About the author

Leave A Reply

Leave A Reply