NNPC, Others Donate Ambulances, Other Medical Equipment to South-west States

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Peter Uzoho

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and its indigenous oil producing partners under the aegis of Independent Petroleum Producers Group (IPPG) yesterday presented six Toyota ambulances and other medical equipment and consumables to the six states of the South-west geopolitical zones.

The donation is part of the IPPG ‘s contribution in support of the ongoing Oil and Gas Industry Intervention Initiative on the COVID-19 Pandemic.

The items included six Toyota ambulances, 2,500 respiratory face masks, 5,000 pieces of safety googles, 5,000 pieces of protective body suits, and 10, 000 respiratory masks.

Present at the presentation of the items in Lagos were the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva; Minister of State for Health, Dr. Olorunnimbe Mamora; Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu; Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mallam Mele Kyari; Group General Manager, Nation Petroleum Investment Management Services, Mr. Bala Wunti; and the Chairman of IPPG, Mr. Adeyemi Bero, amongst others.

Speaking at the occasion, Sylva said the gesture was a continuation of the industry’s intervention to combat the COVID-19 pandemic across the country, stating that the items were being distributed to more states that were being affected by the pandemic.

“Today, NNPC and its partners under the umbrella of the Independent Petroleum Producers Group (IPPG), Chevron Nigeria Limited and Delta Deck Offshore are distributing the following items to more states that are most affected by the pandemic in the South-west geopolitical zones.

“That is, Lagos, Ogun, Oyo, Ondo, Osun and Ekiti States. Six Toyota ambulances, 2,500 respiratory face masks, 5,000 pieces of safety googles, 5,000 pieces of protective body suits, and 10, 000 respiratory masks.

“Already, seven vehicles have been provided to Lagos and Rivers State by the NNPC-Shell Joint Venture to support the important part of contact tracing. Considering supply chain constraints, all committed items cannot be delivered and distributed on the same day,” he said.

According to Sylva, the NNPC and partners will continue to distribute consignment of medical consumables, equipment and logistic facilities across all the states in the coming days.

He added that similar items will also be delivered to Kano and Katsina States, stressing that in line with the Oil and Gas Intervention Initiative’s plan of establishing permanent and sustainable medical infrastructure in each of the geopolitical zones in the coming days, the industry would be conducting a groundbreaking activity for the building of emergency and infectious diseases hospitals in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State and in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State.

However, Mamora, who received the items on behalf of the Presidential Taskforce on COVID-19 Fight and immediately handed them over to Sanwo-Olu for onward dispatch to the states, commended the NNPC and the IPPG for responding to national emergency.

On his part Kyari, who reiterated that the industry needed to embrace cost-cutting measures to surmount the current crisis in the global oil market, assured the oil industry would survive because of its resilient nature.

“You know this is a very resilient industry, it adjusts to every situation. One of the things this industry does is to cut down cost and increase production. But when you increase production today there is nowhere to take it to, you also cut down supply so that at the end of the day you are able to balance your books, you maintain your basic services, you shift your budget forward and ultimately so that you don’t get grounded.

“But this is a very very resilient industry. We are engaging our partners to make sure that we survive this through this and of course, as the Hon. minister has said, this country depends so much on the oil and gas industry, and it is our duty to make sure that this operation continues, revenues continue to flow and that we are able to keep this country going,” Kyari said.

Also speaking, the Chairman of IPPG, Mr. Adeyemi Bero, said beyond the items presented to the South-west states, the group would be making donations in the area of infrastructure