Senate Ad hoc committee arrives Niger Delta, begins probe of oil theft
Worried by the dwindling oil revenue occasioned by crude oil theft and pipeline vandalism, the Senate Adhoc Committee on Oil Theft has arrived in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, to unravel the true state of things at oil facilities across the Niger Delta.
The Ad hoc Committee led by its Chairman, Bassey Akpan, will visit oil platforms in the Niger Delta in company of officials of the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission.
This visit is coming four days after a nationwide protest by members of Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, demanding action from government and stakeholders following the economic havoc caused by oil thieves.
According to the latest Crude Oil and Condensate Production data released by the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission, Nigeria’s oil production fell below one million barrels per day mark last month, coming in at 972,394 barrels per day, the lowest daily average output in 25 years.
Speaking to journalists upon arrival at the Port Harcourt International Airport, the Senate Committee Chairman said the Committee is out to ascertain the reason for the shut ins in Nigeria’s oil production and see to it that oil producers adhere strictly to the industry’s regulations on metering.
He said, “Our intention is to visit every oil terminal in the Niger Delta region to see things for ourselves, the reason for oil theft, the reason for oil losses.
“We at the National Assembly believe that the local refining capacity as a result of all the bunkering issues can never be guaranteed or be sustained or be ensured by the losses.
“We believe that there are other areas where the country loses this huge revenue and resources. So it’s a serious job we are out here to do.”
He believed there are other reasons behind the shortfall in the nation’s oil production which they hope to unravel, saying their engagement and tour will form a basis for their recommendation to the National Assembly.
What you should know:
The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) on Sunday, September 11, 2022, said it losses 470,000 bpd of crude oil amounting to $700 million monthly due to oil theft.
A statement by the NNPCL said that Bala Wunti, the Group General Manager, National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPMS), made this disclosure while speaking during a tour of the facilities of the NNPCL.
Mr Wunti said the pipelines particularly those around Bonny terminal cannot function due to the activities of criminals.
He also argued that the number of barrels stolen daily is very huge, adding that about 270 barrels per day that were supposed to be loaded in Bonny are no longer going to be loaded because of theft.