NNPC Recommits to Deployment of Gas in Driving Nigeria’s Economic Growth

•Oil firm records 155 crude oil theft incidents, 38 suspects arrested in one week

Emmanuel Addeh in Abuja

The Group Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) Mr. Mele Kyari, has reiterated the crucial role of natural gas in fuelling economic growth and industrial development in Nigeria.

Kyari was speaking at the public presentation of a book: “The Rise of Gas: from Gaslink to the Decade of Gas”, authored by Charles Osezua, an engineer, the spokesman of the national oil company, Olufemi Soneye, said in a statement yesterday.

The GCEO highlighted the global acceptance of gas as a crucial energy source that sustains economic growth and drives industrial activities.

Represented by NNPC’s Head of Relationship and Stakeholder Management, Mrs. Oluwakemi Olumuyiwa, the GCEO also emphasised the importance of documenting Nigeria’s gas sector.

Kyari underscored the significance of prioritising natural gas production and supply, particularly in the context of geopolitical dynamics and energy security in the global economy.

With Nigeria boasting substantial gas reserves exceeding 200 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) and a potential to reach 600 Tcf, the GCEO said it was pertinent Nigeria leverages the gas resource for sustainable development, energy security, and job creation.

He noted that the book aligns with the federal government’s “Decade of Gas” initiative, aimed at optimising Nigeria’s abundant gas reserves for both domestic consumption and international export.

Kyari added that as a key stakeholder, the NNPC has played a leading role in advancing the “Decade of Gas” agenda through strategic investments in critical gas infrastructure such as pipelines and processing facilities.

In his remarks, the author, Osezua, who described the unveiling of the book as his significant contribution to Nigeria’s energy literature, expressed gratitude to the NNPC for its support towards the book launch.

Osezua said NNPC’s participation on the occasion of the book launch, underscores the company’s commitment to fostering knowledge sharing and innovation within the gas industry.

Also speaking, Chairman of the Impact Investors Foundation and former Group Executive Director of NNPC, Afolabi Oladele, lauded the book for its comprehensive insights into the gas value chain, saying it will be relevant to policymakers amid the global energy transition.

Meanwhile, the NNPC has said it continues to record remarkable progress in the fight against oil theft and vandalism in the Niger Delta.

In its weekly audio-visual rundown of activities between the  March 30 and  April 5, 2024, it said a total of 155 incidents were recorded across several locations in the Niger Delta region from several sources.

It said on Monday, April 1, 2024, Tantita Security Services team on patrol pursued and arrested a tug boat, Aya Obaolori II, which was being escorted by a marine police boat in Rivers State.

The tug boat, it said, was laden with an unspecified quantity of suspected illegally refined diesel, which was loaded from a barge at Onne dock on the  March 31.

According to the NNPC, five persons on board the top boat were arrested by Tantita team and are currently undergoing interrogation.

 During the week under review, the NNPC said 32 wooden boats conveying stolen crude and illegally refined products were seized and confiscated in Rivers and Delta State.

On land, it explained that seven vehicles loaded with stolen crude were arrested in Imo, Delta, and Rivers State.

In addition, 53 illegal connections were uncovered between the March 30 and April 5, 2024 in Okoroma, Bayelsa State, Iba, Ndoni, and Umwajinuke communities in River State and Udu in Delta State, it added.

It pointed out that 14 cases of vandalism were also recorded in Rivers, Bayelsa, and Warri South in Delta State, while illegal storage sites where stolen crude and illegally refined products are kept were uncovered in Akwa Ibom , Bayelsa, Rivers, and Delta States as well as in Isimini in Abia State.

“Activities of oil thieves have left the immediate environment devastated, a loss to families dependent on agriculture. In total, 36 were discovered in the past week across several locations in Rivers and Abia State.

“Four cases of oil spills owing to activities of vandals were recorded in the past week. In Akaso 10 wellhead in River State, oil leaks into the water, destroying aquatic life. Nine of these incidents took place in the deep blue water, 25 in the western region, 56 in the central region, and 65 in the eastern region.

“Between March 30 and April 5, 2024, 38 suspects were arrested. For NNPC Limited, there is no backing down on the war on crude oil theft until the menace is eradicated for good,” the oil firm stated.

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