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Oil Theft: Nigerian Government Lauds Private Security Firm Protecting Pipelines From Vandals

Nuhu Ribadu said the FG will continue to partner with Tantina to curb vandalism.

The federal government at the weekend expressed gratitude to the management of Tantita Security Services Limited for its efforts in protecting oil pipelines in the Niger Delta region.

This was contained in a statement by the Director Operations of Tantita Security Services, Captain Warredi Enisuoh, and made available to THISDAY in Abuja.

The statement by Tantita added that the Minister of State for Petroleum (Oil), Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, gave the commendation while answering questions from reporters during his tour of oil facilities in the Niger Delta.

Lokpobiri, who was accompanied on the tour by the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), Mele Kyari, among other Government officials, said the President Bola Ahmed Tinubu-led administration was determined to stop all forms of pipeline vandalism and oil theft in the country.

Lokpobiri said: “We’re here because of the problem of pipeline vandalization and illegal bunkering that is going on in the Niger Delta.

“I believe that it has become an existential problem and we need to fight them. We need to fight these criminals to submission.

“What is happening here is so bad that we cannot even know the implications unless maybe when people start dying in their numbers that is when people will know that a few persons who were profiting from this crime are here to wipe all of them out.

“So as a responsible government we have decided that we are going to put a stop to it.

“We are going to work with stakeholders to ensure that we stop all this nonsense in our society. We are not going to allow them. 

“I want to also use the opportunity to express our gratitude to Tantita that has been commissioned by the NNPCL to be able to do some work but we are going to do a lot more.”

On his part, the National Security Adviser (NSA), Nuhu Ribadu said the federal government would sustain its partnership with Tantita Security Services Limited, to curb the crime of pipeline vandalism and oil theft in the Niger Delta.

He added that the federal government would soon take additional measures to ensure that things change for the better in pipeline security.

Ribadu said: “We have done very well to get to where we are now. We are certainly going to take more measures.

“So far, things are beginning to change. Give us little time and you will see things change for the better.”

Relatedly, the Niger Delta Indigenous Movement for Radical Change (NDIMRC), an oil monitoring group, has alleged that those against the renewal of Tantita Security Services were sponsored by cabals behind crude oil theft

NDIMRC therefore called on President Bola Tinubu to renew the pipelines Surveillance to Tompolo for the benefit of the nation advising that no effort should be spared by the federal government in collaborating with the former militant leader in the protection of critical oil and gas infrastructure and securing permanent peace in the oil rich Niger Delta region.

While noting that the oil from the Niger Delta region remains the mainstay of the nation’s economy, the group implored the president not to listen to mischief makers who were not happy with the way Tompolo had handled the issue of oil bunkering in the region since he was awarded the contract by the administration of former President Muhammadu Buhari.

The group, in the statement, on Sunday, signed by its President, Nelly Emma; Secretary, John Sailor and Public Relations Officer (PRO), Stanley Mukoro, acknowledged Tompolo has helped the nation greatly since he was awarded the pipeline Surveillance contract describing him as a man of peace who wants the best always for the nation and the people, but being fought by unpatriotic elements in the country who are bent on crippling the nation’s economy through the stealing of crude oil.

“We want to commend President Tinubu for the good things he is doing for the nation, but we want to appeal to him not to listen to mischief makers and enemies of our country who are waging unnecessary war against Chief Government Ekpemupolo (aka Tompolo) who has been able to put those stealing our oil under check.

“They are out fighting a good man for nothing, but for their selfish interest. These people are bent on crippling the economy at a time your government is looking for money to meet the needs of Nigerians and fix the country.

“These mischief makers and enemies of the nation have done everything possible to ensure that the pipeline Surveillance contract to Tompolo is never renewed. We want to let the President and the whole world to know that Tompolo means well for our nation and those kicking against the renewal of his pipeline Surveillance contract are out to frustrate the efforts of a selfless man who is opposed to the selfish interests of a few as against the general interests of the nation and the people.

“Our investigation revealed that some disgruntled ex-militants who are opposed to the contract awarded to Tompolo by former President Buhari are working hand in hand with those stealing our oil and they have vowed to ensure that the pipeline contract to Tompolo is not renewed,” the group added.Kingsley Nwezeh, Sunday Aborisade in Abuja and Sylvester Idowu in Warri

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