The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) said that losses from vandalism and oil theft has reduced from N800 billion in 2018 to less than N82billion, a feat attributable to clampdown on vandals by joint security efforts.
Mele Kyari, the Group Managing Director, speaking at the official handover of four patrol vehicles and four quad bikes to the Taskforce against vandalism, Operation AWATSE at the headquarters, Western Naval Command (WNC) Apapa, Lagos, said the loss reduction was a feat management was very proud of.
He said by early last year, the level of losses suffered from vandalism along the pipelines from Atlas Cove to Ilorin were impossible to manage.
“We sought support of the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) who instructed the set up of the operation AWATSE that led to the arrest of this situation reducing our losses to less than 50 percent of what we knew at that time.
“It enabled us also to increase flow into that line from less than 800,000 to 2.6 million tons by the end of 2019. Currently, we know that we will exceed this target. So, it is a huge success because without the intervention of Operation AWATSE and all the associated support from all the service- the Nigeria Police, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), we would not have achieved this.
So, it is a very critical assignment for us and we are very happy that this has happened.”
Kyari said the NNPC under his watch promised accountability to Nigerians and have stayed committed to it, noting that the corporation was the only agency that publishes its operations account monthly.
“We have reduced our losses from what was N800 billion in 2018 to less than N82 billion and we are very proud of this. Therefore, in terms of accountability and transparency, we have achieved that and we also promise that we will perform excellently on behalf of the Nigeria people.
“That’s a reflection of the financial statement, that’s what the financial statement tells you that this company has come of age. We have automated almost over 80per cent of our processes, we have taken out discretion in over 80 per cent of our processes in that way we know this company by the close of this year, we would declare our dividend to Nigerians,” he said.
The NNPC boss described as false, allegations that it did not remit N21 billion revenue from Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) to the Federation Account.
The Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) had in a report submitted to the House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts, accused the NNPC of failing to remit dividends paid into the NLNG dividend account.
RMAFC alleged that the NNPC spent the money without remitting same to government coffers.
Reacting to the allegation during an interview with reporters, Kyari said it was practically impossible not to remit money into the federation account.
He said: “I think it is just impossible not to remit money into the Federation Account. It is also impossible to withdraw any money illegally from any account of government. By the way, the NLNG accounts are Treasury Single Accounts (TSA) and domiciled with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
“Asked what the NNPC was doing to make the pipelines not readily accessible to vandals, he said the corporation was tackling the issue from multiple fronts.
Asides empowering security agencies to closely monitor the pipeline areas, Kyari said the NNPC was using technology to monitor vulnerable pipelines.
He said plans were also on to bury the pipelines deeper into the ground through a process called HDD, which he said was very expensive.
Earlier, the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) Gen. Abayomi Olonisakin said the donation of the mobility assets will enhance the Taskforce’s capacity to rapidly deploy enforcement resources for the country’s energy security.
Represented by the Director of Operations, Defence Headquarters, Air Vice Marshal (AVM) Jack Yusuf, Olonisakin reiterated the need to establish a Forward Operating Base (FOB) at Tarkwa Bay for credible presence to sustain gains recorded, adding that he had approved the deployment of additional 110 troops, to hold the ground and prevent the re
turn of many of the cleared hoodlums.
The Commander, Operation AWATSE and Flag Officer Commanding (FOC) WNC, Rear Admiral Oladele Daji in his welcome remarks, said between December 21, 2019 to August 3, a total of 2,862 illegal structures/shanties that encroached on the NNPC Pipeline Right of Way or were used to perpetrate pipeline vandalism were removed.