The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mallam Mele Kyari, yesterday led a delegation from the corporation to engage with the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) Maj. Gen. Lucky Irabor, in a bid to secure the company’s assets nationwide and stop the loss of 200,000 barrels of crude oil daily.
The meeting discussed ways of strengthening collaboration towards securing the nation’s critical oil and gas assets and facilitating NNPC’s hitch-free operations.
A statement in Abuja by the Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs, Dr. Kennie Obateru, noted that while speaking at the event, the NNPC GMD commended the security agencies for their support and called for more protection for NNPC’s operational assets and personnel.
Kyari stated that though petroleum products theft on the System 2B Pipeline had reduced due to support from the security agencies, the nation was still losing about 200,000 barrels of crude oil daily to theft and vandalism.
He said: “We have two sets of losses, one coming from our products and the other coming from crude oil. In terms of crude oil losses, it is still going on. On average, we are losing 200,000 barrels of crude every day.”
Irabor promised to galvanise the military to provide maximum security for the nation’s oil and gas assets.
While highlighting the importance of the engagement, he stated that the collaboration had further strengthened the military’s resolve to protect lives and property.
“I am delighted that you made this effort, and I tell you that the Armed Forces of Nigeria will collaborate with you to protect NNPC’s assets,” he added.
Irabor, who acknowledged the significant role of the oil and gas sector in the economy, said there was a need for collaboration between the NNPC and the armed forces to protect oil and gas facilities, which he described as critical national assets.
“It is my intention to cooperate maximally with you and to give necessary instructions to all officers in the armed forces given that our existence, economically, rests almost solely on the NNPC. To that extent, we must do everything possible to give you everything that you require,” the CDS stated.
According to him, for the sake of the nation’s economy and infrastructure, the armed forces will not relent in ensuring that lives and property nationwide are safeguarded.
Emmanuel Addeh in Abuja