BY OKECHUKWU NNODIM
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and the Nigerian Navy have pledged to work together to curtail crude oil theft and other social crimes in the Nigerian maritime waters.
Speaking during a courtesy call on the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Usman Jibrin in Abuja, the Group Managing Director, NNPC, Dr. Joseph Dawha, said there was need for the corporation and the Navy to strengthen ties for the socio-economic growth and stability of the nation.
Dawha, according to a statement from the NNPC on Tuesday, said the Navy had supported the corporation in securing its assets and facilities in the upstream, midstream and downstream sectors of the oil and gas industry, adding that the aggressive patrols and surveillance had led to the arrest of pirates and illegal bunkerers over the years.
He said the security presence of the Navy had gone a long way in stabilising NNPC operations in Escravos, Warri, Port Harcourt, Bonny, Atlas Cove in Lagos and the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company operations in Benin city and environs.
Dawha expressed the readiness of the NNPC to sustain the engagement with the Navy and other security personnel, especially in the areas of pipeline security, vandalism, crude and product theft and the associated crimes of kidnapping and abduction of oil workers on the near shore, offshore and deep water.
In his response, Jibrin reassured the GMD and the top management of the NNPC of the Navy‚Äôs continuous support in reducing oil theft, illegal bunkering, piracy and poaching to its barest minimum.
The naval chief said the activities of oil bunkers and illegal refiners had given the country a negative image and the Navy was determined to chase the perpetrators of these nefarious acts out of business for the common good of the country.