May 30, 2024

Naval chief urges NNPCL to compel oil operators to seal deactivated wellheads

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Adewale Akintaro

Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla, the Chief of Naval Staff, on Thursday implored the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, NNPCL, to force oil operators to seal off their deactivated oil wellheads in the Niger Delta, to stem the tide of crude oil theft and vandalism.
The Naval chiev also advocated the use of technology in the monitoring of active and functional oil wellheads, saying the Nigerian Navy would compile a list of all deactivated wellheads and present to NNPC L for action.The Chief of Naval Staff, who disclosed these in Port Harcourt during the assessment of Operation Delta Sanity, said international best practices demand that deactivated wellheads are properly sealed in such a way that it becomes impossible for ordinary persons to penetrate them.
“All over the world, not all wellheads may be manned, but we could have effective ways of ensuring that those unmanned wellheads are properly monitored using technology. That is what is being done in some advanced countries and we are putting it forward to the NNPCL and the Federal Government to ensure that we employ technology to ensure proper surveillance of all the active wellheads.

“In terms of deactivated wellheads, worldwide industry standards require that when wellheads are no longer economical, they are deactivated, which means they are properly sealed in such a way that it becomes impossible for the ordinary person to penetrate them.
“That is what we are advocating that NNPCL and the regulators, NUPRC, should compel all oil operators to seal all their deactivated wellheads.
“All we need is to ensure proper enforcement and we cannot do it alone as the Nigerian Navy but we have given a directive today, and we are going to compile a list of all those wellheads and present it to the NNPCL, recommending that they should be deactivated sealed properly, so that it will no longer pose as an opportunity for vandals,” Vice Admiral Ogalla said.

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