On Monday, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC Ltd) conducted an inspection of an illegal crude oil vessel loaded with thousands of metric tonnes of crude oil.
The vessel was intercepted by Tanita Security Services, a private security firm, in collaboration with the Nigeria Security & Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC). The interception occurred while the vessel was loading directly from an offshore platform in Bayelsa State.
The NNPC Ltd made this announcement in a statement posted via its official channels, underscoring efforts to curb illegal activities in the oil and gas sector and ensure the proper and legal handling of Nigeria’s crude oil resources.
“Earlier today, the Group CEO of NNPC Ltd, Mr Mele Kyari, and the Chief of Defence Staff, General Christopher Musa, were in Oporoza, Warri, Delta State, to inspect MT Kali, an illegal crude oil vessel loaded with thousands of metric tonnes of crude oil, intercepted by Tanita Security Services, a private security firm, in collaboration with the Nigeria Security & Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), while it was loading directly from an offshore platform in Bayelsa State,” the NNPC Ltd said.
The NNPC Ltd reported that all 23 crew members aboard the illegal vessel have been arrested. During the inspection tour of the illegal vessel on Monday, Mr. Musa, representing the military, emphasized the commitment to collaborating with NNPC Ltd and other government and private security agencies to combat the issue of crude oil theft in the Niger Delta.
Additionally, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC Ltd) awarded a multi-billion naira pipeline surveillance contract to Government Tompolo, a former leader of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND).
This strategic move is part of efforts to secure critical oil infrastructure and deter illegal activities in the Niger Delta region.
This underscores the joint efforts to address illegal activities and ensure the security of Nigeria’s oil resources.
“We are committed to stopping all acts of criminality in Nigerian waters. We are also sounding a note of warning to the perpetrators of this crime that enough is enough.
“The country is bleeding, and we need all the funds to develop as a nation. It is by stopping these acts of criminality that we will be able to achieve that dream,” Mr Musa added.
In recent years, Nigeria has experienced a significant increase in incidents of oil theft in its oil-producing region, contributing to the nation’s revenue challenges.
To address the issue of crude oil theft, the Nigerian government took steps, including launching an application in August 2022 to monitor and track cases of theft. This technological approach aims to enhance surveillance and facilitate a more effective response to incidents.