By Obas Esiedesa
THE Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mallam Mele Kyari has disclosed that Nigeria is presently losing about 200,000 barrels of crude oil daily to thieves and vandals.
Kyari made this disclosure during a meeting with the Chief of Defence Staff, Major General Lucky Irabor, in Abuja on Wednesday, a statement by the Corporation said.
Kyari who commended the security agencies for their support, called for more protection for NNPC’s operational assets and personnel.
He disclosed that though petroleum products theft on the System 2B Pipeline has reduced considerably due to support from the security agencies, the nation was still losing about 200,000 barrels of crude oil daily to theft and vandalism.
According to him, “We have two sets of losses, one coming from our products and the other coming from crude oil. In terms of crude losses, it is still going on. On the average, we are losing 200,000 barrels of crude every day”.
In his response, Major General Irabor promised to galvanize the military to provide maximum security for the nation’s oil and gas assets.
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General Irabor commended Mallam Kyari for initiating the engagement, saying “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 acknowledged the significant role of the oil and gas sector to the economy, stressing that there was need for collaboration between the NNPC and the Armed Forces to protect oil and gas facilities which he described as the 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, and to that extent, we must do everything possible to give you everything that you require,” the CDS stated.