By Yemie Adeoye
NIPCO Plc, one of theÂ Â main players in the downstream sector of the oil and gas industry has observed that zero tolerance to hazardsÂ associated with handling of hydrocarbons to both human and material resources remainsÂ the hallmarks of its operation since inception.
The company whose commercial operation has continued for an upward of five years has made safety consciousness in all ramifications its watchword even as several equipment are in place to guarantee any exposure to hazards in the organization.
This was the position of the companyâ€™s image maker and Corporate Affairs Manager, Mr. Lawal Taofeek while receiving the graduating students of the Maritime Academy of Nigeria Oron,Â Cross River State who paid a facility visit to the terminal.
According to him, the notion accounted mainly for the no negative incident phenomenon in the establishment.
The 42-man delegation led by Mr. Lekan Oloyede of the Maritime Engineering Department of the institution was in the terminal for practical exposure to oil and gas-related facilities as part of the requirement for the award of HND by the institution.
Lawal further stated that the company has since its conception noted the hazardous nature of exposure of its personnel and equipment to petroleum products, hence the insistence that all the safety parameters must not only be put in place but also be seen to be working and effective.
Ruminating over the past five years of operation, he noted that the company had remained committed to its vision of being the first choice company in the oil and gas industry to all stakeholders by providing quality services in petroleum products handling in an environment that is friendly, safe and dignifying.
According to him, NIPCO emerged as a child of necessity following domination of the sector by foreign companies at the expense of scores of independent fuel marketers with stations across the nooks and crannies of the nation.
The companyâ€™s emergence, he pointed out, coincided with the avowed belief of government that opening up the downstream sector with its attendant positive impact could be highly beneficial to all and sundry.
He affirmed that the sustained expansion of the sector which threw up organizations like NIPCO has offered great opportunities for the coming together of indigenous petroleum marketing companies to take the bull by the horn by putting up an automated terminal in Apapa, the hub of depot operations in Nigeria.
He also asserted that with the dogged determination and resourcefulness of subscribing fuel marketers and the core investor, the company is now a reference point in the annals of petroleum products storage and distribution in the country.
Mr. Lawal informed the cadets that the company has continued to broaden its business horizon, the latest being its entry in retailing of fuel at its branded stations across the nation.
Speaking on relationship with the Nigerian Navy, owners of the Maritime Academy, the image maker said the force â€œhad been instrumental to our growth through the avalanche of assistance they give to the organization at all times.â€
The support, he listed included security, traffic control on access road leading to the terminal, vessel clearance for discharge of petroleum products at the jetty etc, all of which had contributed to our success story so far.
Earlier in hisÂ address, head of the delegation, Engr. Oloyede thanked the management of the company for offering them the opportunity to expose their engineering cadets for the second year.
He noted that the experience gathered from the visit had always remained indelible in the minds of the cadets in all their future endeavour especially with regards to the state-of-art facilities in the companyâ€™s terminal.