Operatives of Daven Oil and Security Enterprises, a pipeline security contractors recently engaged by the Federal Government, along with officers of the Joint Task Force (JTF) of the Nigerian Army and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), have uncovered nine illegal refineries in Bayelsa State.
According to the spokesman and Mobilization Officer of the surveillance company, Okardi Yogo, the illegal refineries which were uncovered in three communities in the state, have a combined total daily production estimated to be more than one million barrels.
Yogo, who addressed newsmen on the discovery of the illegal refineries at the weekend, said it was part of an ongoing war against crude oil theft and illegal refineries in the Niger Delta.
He noted that the discovery of the sites was carried out under “Operation No More Smoke” embarked upon by the company with the aim of eradicating illegal oil bunkering activities in the Niger Delta region.
“The illegal refineries commonly called Kpofire in local parlance, were uncovered in Okordia/Zarama/Biseni in Yenagoa LGA and the boundary communities of Ibelebiri and Otuege (Agba) in Ogbia LGA of the state,” he said.
“This is a baby operation, Daven Oil and Security Limited is one of the pipelines surveillance security taking charge of a section of the Niger Delta,” Yogo said.
“We are here kick-starting the ‘Operations No More Smoke’, we are on discovery sessions, which have yielded good results.
“Based on intelligence reports and support from our grand patron, General Amagbein Boro, we were able to uncover sites with about 15 oven (tanks) with a capacity of 450,000 litres daily production in Okordia/Zarama/Biseni in Yenagoa council.
“We had difficulty accessing the sites because they are tucked away about eight kilometres across the Taylor Creek in the swamp forest.
“We trekked for more than three hours before we got to the locations. We also discovered that the operators were tapping their production from Shell Petroleum Development Company, SPDC, pipelines in the area.
“We have also visited sites in Ibelebiri and Agba communities in Ogbia council of Bayelsa State and we have also uncovered in these areas, many tanks constructed by illegal refineries operators with production capacity of more than 500,000 barrels per day, and one of the standouts of that operation was the visible environmental impact.
“We saw two hectares of land totally destroyed by activities of artisanal crude oil refining. We will continue to uncover more and fetch them out from the roots.
“Our mandate is to protect the environment and oil facilities to boost oil production and the Nigerian economy, that is the task given to us and we will continue to collaborate and sensitize the communities and work with the leaders of the community,” Yogo said.
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