5,000km of oil pipelines vandalised — NNPCL boss

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The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited on Tuesday said that vandals carried out the vandalisation of over 5,000km of oil pipelines across the country, adding that the situation has become a national calamity.

The Chief Executive Officer of the company, Mele Kyari, made the submission before the Senate on Tuesday.

Kyari, who appeared before the Senate Committee on Petroleum (Downstream), however, assured Nigerians that the Nation’s four oil refineries would be made functional very soon.

He said the problem of oil pipeline vandalism has been bedeviling the sector over the decades as the company had not been able to pump oil through the pipeline from Warri to Benin in the last 22 years.

He said: “Over 5,000 kilometers oil pipelines in the country are not working.

“As a result of pipeline vandalism, 10 million litres of oil was lost from volume pumped from Aba to Enugu at a time.

“The company has been unable to pump oil from Warri to Benin within the last 22 years and cannot connect to Ore.

“There is no amount of security measures that had not been taken to curb the crime without success, which, to us in NNPCL, is substantially a national calamity.”

Kyari, however, said as a way out, the company is embarking on massive replacement of the pipelines, which aside from being vandalised, are old and obsolete.

He explained further to the committee that the deregulation of the oil sector and in particular subsidy removal carried out in May this year has turned NNPCL into a profitable company.

According to him, before deregulation in 2018, the company made loss of N802 billion, but after deregulation in 2021, it made a profit of N687 billion.

He added that while 67 million litres of oil was consumed per day during the era of subsidy regime, an average of 55 million litres is being consumed on daily basis now, just as the problem of smuggling the product across border has become a thing of the past.

The Chairman of the committee, Senator Ifeanyi Ubah (APC-Anambra South), and all the members responded separately to submissions made by the NNPCL boss that proper dissection of challenges facing the sector would be better made in a retreat.

But Senator Seriake Dickson (PDP-Bayelsa West) told the NNPCL boss to look critically into surveillance security contract the company is operating as regards the non-inclusion of some oil producing areas.

Dickson said: “Some local governments in Bayelsa State, like Sagbama, where I come from, are not covered by the contract with attendant consequences.”

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