Oil Theft: NSA, Service Chiefs, Four Ministers Inspect Niger Delta Assets
In a bid to curb oil theft and illegal refining of crude oil in the Niger Delta area, a presidential delegation inspected government assets in some states within the oil-rich area on Saturday.p
The delegation was led by Nuhu Ribadu, the National Security Adviser (NSA) to President Bola Tinubu.
On the delegation with the NSA were the Chief of Defense Staff (CDS), General Christopher Musa; and the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt Gen Taoreed Lagbaja.
Others include Minister of Defence, Muhammed Badaru; Minister of State for Defence, Bello Matawalle; Minister of State (Oil), Petroleum Resources, Heineken Lokpobiri; and Minister of State (Gas), Petroleum Resources, Ekperipe Ekpo.
Also, senior management team members of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited and other top security personnel made the delegation.
The delegation first visited Rivers State Governor, Siminalayi Fubara, in Port Harcourt, the state capital, where crude oil theft and other matters around the operation of the Port Harcourt Refinery were discussed.
Addressing the governor, the NSA said the delegation was in Rivers at the instruction of the President.
Ribadu said the President believes that “indeed this part of Nigeria matters a lot; not just the resources but of course the people of the Niger Delta need to live in peace”.
“He has given (an) instruction. As you see here, this is the entire federal might. Strategic individuals and offices are here assembled.
“This is a clear demonstration of a commitment and a belief that indeed, time has come for us to open a new chapter.
“We believe that it is time to do the right thing and we’re going to do it,” the NSA said.
On his part, Badaru said the nation needs to secure its assets, adding that the inspection of the assets will enable the delegation to see the challenges and consider best ways to resolving them.
The minister said the team is committed to ending the menace at whatever cost in the interest of the government and the people.
“We have the marching order by Mr President to stop crude oil theft and all other vandalism around our installations and that we promised to do”.
The team is also expected to visit Delta State to inspect oil and gas facilities