Nigeria is Complete TOAST and They Don't Care : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

[ Fair Use: For Educational/Research Purposes Only ] 12/14/99 -- 2:02 PM

Year 2000 Nightmare? Just another day in chaotic Nigeria

ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) - Lights could go out in millions of homes, banks and hospitals may grind to a halt. Water and fuel shortages are likely.

But are ordinary Nigerians stocking up on candles, water and canned food amid the alarmist predictions of Year 2000 computer bug turmoil? The answer is - yawn - no.

Long accustomed to chaos, most Nigerians are either blissfully unaware or heave a nonchalant shrug when it comes to preparing for a possible nationwide meltdown on Jan. 1.

Even the worst Y2K predictions - Nigeria seems as likely to experience serious problems as anywhere else on the planet - look like just another day to many Nigerians.

The oil-rich nation of 120 million people is painfully inured to power outages, water shortages, traffic jams and failed banks.

Decades of incompetence and corruption under successive military rulers prior to the inauguration of Nigeria's new democratic government in May have reduced the country's infrastructure to a shambles.

The country's oil refineries are in complete disrepair. Gasoline is often available only on the black market in plastic milk jugs. Salaries must be carried home in paper bags because the country's biggest bill, the new 100 naira note, is worth less than $1. Freeways are clogged with the charred corpses of burned out or abandoned vehicles.

Janet Mba, a journalist in the capital, Abuja, sums up Nigeria's nonchalance.

``Y2K-type problems have always been with us. There is such an incredible degree of inefficiency in the Nigerian system. So what difference will Jan. 1, 2000 make?'' she asks.

Plenty, many computer analysts say.

Despite being one of the few west African countries with significant computerization, Nigeria is cash-strapped and faces nearly impossible hurdles to reach compliance in time. Authorities all but ignored Y2K until civilian President Olusegun Obasanjo took office six months ago.

``On a scale of one to 10 in terms of Y2K readiness, Nigeria is struggling to get to level 2,'' said Pius Okigbo Jr., a computer consultant in Abuja.

For a last-minute crusade, the government was able to provide only $1 million of the $200 million requested by the Y2K coordinating center. Officials tasked with battling the bug say critical sectors have not been fully addressed.

Official figures claim 88 percent compliance in telecommunications, 75 percent in transportation and 50 percent in government agencies. The military - one of Africa's largest and best-trained - is only about 30 percent ready.

The state-owned power and telephone companies - both famed for their atrocious service - say they are ready, but Nigerians are skeptical.

The oil industry, the world's sixth-largest, is in good shape because it is managed by multinational companies with enormous resources. But refineries and power-generating plants could face significant problems.

What may ease the pressure are the Nigerians themselves. Their resilience and resourcefulness are legendary.

Whenever the water goes off in the sprawling commercial capital of Lagos, as it regularly does, people carry buckets on their heads from the nearby river. Private companies transport and sell chlorinated water from trucks.

Almost all Nigerians with money have diesel generators or paraffin stoves and lanterns for use during electricity failures.

Many Nigerians expect a few weeks in January without water, lights, banks - and maybe telephones - and then a halting return of some services. In short, a return to the crazy routine.

``We are very much at home with a fire brigade approach to addressing critical national issues.

Perhaps it's something to do with our mentality,'' said office worker Tunji Martins. ``We ... see these things break down, then scramble to improvise.''

-- Ashton & Leska (, December 14, 1999


It seems to us the media is really starting to go all-out with this meme that "Well, things don't work anyway, so no big deal."

-- Ashton & Leska in Cascadia (, December 14, 1999.

...and how much oil do we get from Nigeria?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thanks A&L :-)



-- Michael Taylor (, December 14, 1999.

Almost all Nigerians with money have diesel generators or paraffin stoves and lanterns for use during electricity failures.

Many Nigerians expect a few weeks in January without water, lights, banks - and maybe telephones - and then a halting return of some services.

not a lot of we American's are going to react well to what they are so used to...

Mike =================================================================

-- Michael Taylor (, December 14, 1999.

No A&L, I think it's more like: Yeah your going to watch 17hrs. of things breaking around the world on CNN, but that is normal in those countries ! Don't Panic.

-- FLAME AWAY (, December 14, 1999.

...Now we know what to expect for the District of Columbia.

-- and pass (the@crack.pipe), December 14, 1999.

Nigeria produces about 2 million barrels / day, 650,000 bls / day of which flows to the US. One key - its mostly low gravity Bony Light with high gasoline and light products yield. They have 440,000 bls a day of refining capacity mostly for domestic consumption but if all these 3rd world refineries go down it'll pull product from Europe and the Carribean from units that usually export to the US.

-- Downstreamer (, December 14, 1999.


Another Country that was At the bottom of The U.S. commerce report earlier this year was Venezuela.

Lately Venezuela has mysteriously become 100% compliant--In one year!!! Also at the same time did'nt they just have a government change where the old gov. leaders left the new leaders with a Billion dollar shortfall!!

-- d----- (, December 14, 1999.

"For a last-minute crusade, the government was able to provide only $1 million of the $200 million requested by the Y2K coordinating center. Officials tasked with battling the bug say critical sectors have not been fully addressed."

Not fully addressed? Gee, there's a shocker. $1 million spent and still not done? But they started about six months ago.

Nigeria needs to send a team of consultants to Venezuela. It was less than six months from the time they announced that "nothing has been done" to the time they reported their "y2k-ok/compliance".

But I think Venezuela's secret was that they had previously sent consultants to Russia, where their "specially designed computers were not susceptible to the y2k bug". So perhaps the consultants should go directly to Russia.

But then again, Japan was ranked as "a year behind" the U.S., and admitted as much, as recently as last fall. They caught up in about 3 months. So Japan has a way of doing 15 months worth of work in 3 months. (Assuming the US kept working during the 3 months in question.) Perhaps the Nigerian consultants should head off to Japan.

But Japan's real leap in compliance occured after complaining to Gartner and other 'rating' agencies. Obviously, this is the best, fastest and least expensve way of ensuring better compliance.

It appears that the Nigerians need to visit Gartner Group. That should take care of most of their problems.

-- Me (, December 14, 1999.

The article contents are bogus-just spin nonsense. I have to assume that. Nigeria is volatile at this time, and the USA government is politely leaping into the scene before Africa politically explodes at the seams. We're not going to know any truth as the USA starts messing with the different sects on top of the broken code crises.

And brace yourself, we're going to be "educated" that "Africa is in the interest of Americans." latest&f=99121301.alt&t=/products/washfile/newsitem.shtml

-- Paula (, December 14, 1999.


just fell out of my leather executive chair and fotflmao!!

EVERYONES --in Great shape!!

-- d----- (, December 14, 1999.

Here is an even better link discussing how Africa is blowing apart at the seams. It's already really deadly there, and the UN peacekeeping troops are already starting to enter the scene in if I recall the Congo which is just one danger zone out of many. 500 troops.

-- Paula (, December 14, 1999.


Petroleum Products The United States, like many countries, relies heavily on energy shipments. It is the largest importer of crude oil and second largest consumer of natural gas. By the end of 1999, it is estimated that the United States will consume 19.3 million barrels of oil a day, about half of which is imported. Of this amount, 51 percent is imported from countries in the Western Hemisphere, 21 percent from the Middle East, 18 percent from Africa, and 11 percent from other countries. The petroleum industry is highly dependent upon information technologies in every aspect of its business operations, including production, maintenance, finance, communications, security, safety, and delivery. Embedded microchips are widely used in the industry's distributed control systems.

Table 11 lists the largest suppliers of petroleum product imports to the United States, which totaled $49 billion in 1998 and represented 5 percent of total imports. ( Petroleum products include crude oil, gasoline, and kerosene.) The top five countries-Venezuela, Canada, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, and Nigeria -accounted for two-thirds of this total.

1. Venesuela 7,638

2. Canada 7.514

3. Saudia Arabia 5,736

4. Mexico 5,293

5. Nigeria 4,129

[figures are in millions of U.S. dollars)

-- Linda (, December 14, 1999.

Thanks A&L,

I think the spin doctors have missed - or intentionally glossed over - an important point with articles like this. We hear about contries like Nigeria, Italy, Russia, etc. where people aren't worried about what will happen if their computers all transition to a new state, as they already live day to day with an unreliable infrastructure. Countries such as these do not typically rank among the economic powerhouses, whereas the heavies; USA, Canada, UK, Germany, France, etc. enjoy a reliable flow of information and energy, unbroken supply chains, etc. all courtesy of an reliable infrastructure.

Will life go on if the infrastructure becomes not so reliable, if communication becomes a little more uncertain, and if me and my fellow citizens have to spend more effort keeping ourselves alive. Probably. I hope. (Don't get me started on the potential for snowball effect)

Will the loss in economic efficiency resulting from the infrastructure becoming unreliable affect the unbelievably high standard of living enjoyed by many (including me) in 1st world nations? You bet.

Then again, perhaps I am merely stating the obvious.


-- trouble (we', December 14, 1999.

See, you're getting a lot of your oil from us here in Canada.....

And I refuse to give you all the details about our extremely secret plot to push the price of oil the US$100.00 per barrel because then you might figure out that our plan was to eventually annex the USA and make it our 13th province......

But relax, it will take at least 6 months before we own you, lock, stock and barrel.........

Don't worry, I'll put in a good word for you with our King and Dictator for Life and he'll treat y'all nicely......I have a lot of pull here ya know.

-- Craig (, December 14, 1999.

Hey Craig - If you had that much "pull", you would have started your own thread.

-- LiarLiar (Pants@Fire.ouch), December 14, 1999.


How about you pulling my other leg now?

-- Squid (, December 14, 1999.

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