Despite renewed efforts aimed at tackling oil theft, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Ltd (NNPCL), said it recorded 157 incidents within one week (December 30, 2023 and January 5, 2024) in the Niger Delta.
In a document obtained from its X handle, yesterday, the company listed the incidence sources to include Nigeria AGIP Oil Company, Pipeline Infrastructure Nigeria Limited (PINL), Maton Engineering Ltd, Tantita Security Services Ltd.
Other highlighted sources are the NNPCL Command and Control Center, Shell Petroleum Development Company, SPDC and government security agencies.
The report stated: “In the past week, 52 illegal refineries were discovered in Obuzo and Owaza in Abia State, Ohaji/Egbema in Imo State, Rumuekpe in Rivers State and Otuesegha in Bayelsa State, all the refineries discovered were destroyed.
“32 illegal refineries were uncovered in several part of Bayelsa State, Delta State and Rivers State, illegal connections were also removed and repaired along the central corridor in the Niger Delta, while seven illegal storage sites were uncovered in parts of Akwa Ibom State.
“Buried drums of crude were unearthed and some discovered in bushes, in Operoma in Bayelsa State and Oleh-Okpari in Warri Delta State, sacks of stolen crude were confiscated, also in Delta State, drums filled with stolen crude were found in the river.
“Oil well head were vandalized in Okrika and Ebocha, in Rivers State were the protection around the well head did not stand a chance.”
According to the NNPC Ltd., nine of the incidents took place in the deep blue water, 45 in the Eastern region, 95 in the central region and eight in the western region.
Recently, the Minister of State Petroleum (Oil), Senator Heineken Lokpobiri had called on traditional rulers to assist in tackling oil theft.
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In a statement obtained by reporters, the media aide to Lokpobiri, Nneamaka Okafor, said the Minister has “embarked on a series of insightful and collaborative courtesy visits to traditional rulers in Bayelsa State. This strategic initiative aligns with the Minister’s unwavering commitment to foster cooperation with key stakeholders in the oil industry, specifically aimed at addressing persistent challenges such as pipeline vandalization, crude theft, and security uncertainties in oil-bearing communities across the region.”