FG to Deploy Technology to Stop Crude Oil Theft

September 24, 2022
crude oil theft

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

The federal government is looking to end crude oil theft in Nigeria via technology, the Minister of Information and Culture, Mr Lai Mohammed, has said.

Mr Mohammed disclosed that the government was worried about the menace and how it is depriving the nation of the revenue needed to develop the country and provide for the citizens.

He explained that this was why private organisations were contracted to protect oil installations in the Niger Delta region, where the commodity is extracted.

“The continued campaign by the Government Security Agencies (GSAs) has led to the arrest of 210 suspects and confiscation of 20.2 million litres of AGO, 461.8 thousand litres of PMS, 843.6 thousand litres of DPK, and 383.5 thousand barrels of crude oil,” the Minister said at a press briefing in Abuja on Friday after the aerial surveillance of the Trans-Forcados oil pipeline in Rivers State.

“An additional 365 illegal refining sites were destroyed, with about 1,054 refining ovens, 1,210 metal storage tanks, 838 dugout pits, and 346 reservoirs destroyed by the GSAs.

“We witnessed first-hand a number of illegal refineries destroyed by our military in the course of our aerial surveillance,” Mr Mohammed added.

He noted that many vehicles, crude mining and bunkering equipment, such as speed boats, wooden boats, trucks and tankers, have also been confiscated.

“The new security architecture leverages collaboration between the upstream operators, industry regulators, GSAs, and Private Security Contractors (PSC),” he said.

Mr Mohammed said the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited has now set up a Command and Control Centre for round-the-clock monitoring of petroleum operations and activities within the Nigerian Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), which ensures that all vessel movements within the Nigerian Exclusive Economic Zone are monitored.

“In addition, all ship-to-ship activities within the Nigerian EEZ are also monitored. Vessels without permits are flagged and escalated to the Nigerian Navy for a prompt response. Production is also monitored end-to-end at the Command and Control Centre, from the wellhead to the export terminals,” he said.

Aduragbemi Omiyale

Aduragbemi Omiyale is a journalist with Business Post Nigeria, who has passion for news writing. In her leisure time, she loves to read.

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