Lagos—The Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, yesterday called on the Federal Government to impose tougher penalties against petroleum pipelines vandals.
The South-West Chairman of NUPENG, Alhaji Tokunbo Korodo, made the call in Lagos.
He alleged that some known vandals would walk the streets freely two months after arrest, adding that such scenario was ridiculous.
Korodo said that such vandals would begin to threaten those that tipped off relevant authorities to effect their arrest.
“The punishment for vandalism of petroleum pipelines is weak. One discovered that if these vandals are caught within two to three months, he or she will become a free man.
“These criminals will now come back and start threatening those that gave information for their arrest.
“As the chairman of NUPENG South-West, I have led a team to arrest pipeline vandals but when I realised that after few months, those vandals will come back as freemen, I withdrew.
“They used to come and meet me and would say: Chief, we know where your children are schooling; we know your wife’s shop; if you leak our secret again, we will kidnap them.
Korodo urged the government to investigate some officials of NNPC.
He alleged that some “bad eggs” among the NNPC officials were collaborating with the vandals to siphon petroleum products.
“In the past, if Pipelines and Products Marketing Company, (PPMC) pumped 500,000 litres of water, all the water would get to destination without a drop siphoned.
“But, today, if PPMC pumps 500,000 litres of petroleum, it will be very hard to receive 50,000 litres out of it. About 450,000 litres would be siphoned by these vandals.
“How do they know the actual time they are pumping these products if not that there are saboteurs among officials of PPMC?” he said.
Korodo said that if the government could impose tough penalty against these vandals, they would desist from the act.