The Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria is seeking the Nigerian government to establish a Special Task Force to monitor Nigeria’s pipelines and guard against oil theft.
The President of the association, Mr Francis Johnson, said that the establishment of such force would ensure sound pipeline integrity and safe transportation of crude.
Mr Johnson raised the issue at the group’s Shell Branch Triennial Delegates Conference in Port Harcourt, the capital of Rivers State.
Nigeria’s loss due to crude oil theft and pipeline vandalism is estimated to be the combined daily production of Ghana, Gabon and Equitorial Guinea.
While decrying the activities of oil thieves, the group also wondered why the Petroleum Industry Bill had not seen the light of day.
According to them, the non-passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill in the National Assembly has adversely affected the level of investment in the oil and gas industry.
Meanwhile, The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, has explained that the PIB, which has been pending before the National Assembly in the last seven years, requires extensive engagements with all stakeholders to iron out all grey areas.
He has also sought military support in pipeline monitoring and said that the NNPC would also deploy drones in the monitoring of the oil-rich nation’s pipelines.