*To avoid bombing of Niger Delta supply lines
By Chineme Okafor in Abuja
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has said it decided to look for an alternative crude oil supply source for its Kaduna refinery because pipelines that supply it crude from the Niger Delta are often destroyed by vandals.
The corporation, in a statement from its Group General Manager, Public Affairs Division, Mr.Ndu Ughamaduon Sunday in Abuja, quoted its Group Managing Director, Dr. Maikanti Baru, to have said this and that a 1,000 kilometres crude pipeline from Niger Republic to Kaduna would be built.
Baru, according to the statement also said the NNPC was committed to the upgrade and expansion of the Kaduna Refinery in line with his 12 key business focus areas in order to return it to the path of growth and profitability.
According to the statement, he said this during a town hall meeting with management and staff of the refinery in Kaduna.
He stated that efforts are ongoing to explore the possibilities of piping crude oil from Niger Republic to the refinery, adding that President Muhammadu Buhari was personally committed to this.
According to him, it was important to explore alternative crude supply to Kaduna Refinery because it has been affected by vandalism of pipelines and obsolescence.
He said the initiative will reduce downtime of the plant and ensure optimal utilisation.
“Due to challenges with the aged refinery and crude oil pipelines that had been breached severally, the operations of the refinery has been epileptic.
“This, we are determined to resolve through various intervention methods including evaluation of alternative crude oil supply from Niger Republic through building of a pipelines of over 1, 000 kilometers from Agadem to Kaduna. That efforts is being championed by Mr. President himself,” said Baru.