Unemployment, idleness responsible for crude theft In Nigerian waterways- Udofia
By Ayoola Olaitan
The Chief Executive Officer – Executive Secretary of the Institute of Export Operations and Management Nigeria Limited, IEOM, Ofon Udofia, has said that crude theft persists on Nigeria Waterways because of unemployment and idleness.
In order to stem the tide, he said government must as a matter of necessity, come up with strategies and policies to solve the challenge .
Such policies and strategies , according to him, will save the country’s daily operational losses to crude theft and other related challenges .
He said, “Crude theft is a daily occurrence on our waters especially within the Niger Delta region and this can be ascribed to increase in unemployment and idleness; it is not a good situation for us as business owners”
Recall that Nigeria crude market has been on the downhill as a result of daily loss of 200,000 barrels of crude oil to theft and vandalism.
The above revelation is contained in a report of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
The group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mallam Mele Kyari stated that : “We have two sets of losses, one coming from our products and the other coming from crude oil. In terms of crude losses, they are still going on. On the average, we are losing 200,000 barrels of crude every day”.
According to Udofia, the solution is for the Federal Government to refortify its security apparatus in order to stop the massive leakage in the sector in the shortest possible time before it cripples the nation’s economy.
In his words, “It is left for the relevant agencies and government to come up with safety policies and strategies to help combat activities of crude theft and also there is little to what individuals can do to tackle this problem”
In a related development, the Nigerian Navy has been indicted of unprofessional conduct bordering on economic sabotage on the Nigeria waters as it’s officers are accused of aiding and abetting crude theft.
Nigeria, Africa’s largest producer of crude oil, has recorded several losses arising from insecurity and environmental degradation associated with the transport of crude oil through a maze of old and leaky pipelines in recent times.