NNPC justifies use of Tompolo in fight against crude oil theft in Niger Delta
The Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited has revealed the rationale behind the recruitment of private security contractors in the fight against crude oil theft.
Mele Kyari, the NNPCL Chairman, made this known on Tuesday at the 2022 Energy And Labour Summit of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) in Abuja.
According to Kyari, the use of private security companies aids in the discovery of illegal oil points.
The government had recently announced its decision to entrust Tantita Security Services, a private firm which is run by former militant leader Government Ekpemepulo aka Tompolo, with the surveillance of Nigeria’s pipelines. The decision had thrown up several questions and condemnations from many Nigerians.
Tompolo’s company recently made a shocking discovery on the subject of crude oil theft in the Niger Delta region. He claimed that since the effort to stop oil theft on the waterways of Delta and Bayelsa states started, about 58 illegal oil points have been found.
Read also:‘NNPC is a money pit instead of a cash cow,’ Sanusi demands disbandment of company
The NNPC boss, Kyari had claimed that without the connections of experts, many recent crude oil thefts would not have been possible.
“We don’t mince words about it that the involvement of private security companies in this journey has helped us. Many of the discoveries we make today could not have been done without local knowledge, access to the people, supporting the local people who are used by some of the criminals to perpetrate some of these things for very little things that they give them. Now, they are involved and supporting us in the recovery of these assets and we are very proud of their intervention,” Kyari said.
The NNPC Limited, according to Kyari, won’t spare anyone in its determination to recover the country’s oil assets, and he added that many of the crude oil theft discoveries made in recent weeks cannot be disclosed to the public.
Kyari said, “Whoever, anywhere whether in the NNPC, security agencies or wherever you are, whoever you are working for, as long as we know such people, please report such people because they are the enemies of all of us.
“Everyone is on the table today because if we don’t arrest this, we won’t have a company. It will completely question any possibility of energy security for the country.
“Until we arrest the current problem of theft, it is very difficult to take the next step. And I am happy to share with you today that monumental progress has been achieved. And I can tell you in the next couple of days, maximum a week, more of our pipelines will come back on stream. This will no doubt provide the resources that will be required to go back to work, reinvest and also provide resources for our country.”
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