Almost a year after a major Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) owned oil facility, the Mosimi oil Depot, near Ogun State, was put out of use by suspected Niger Delta militants, the corporation has announced that it is about to resume loading products from the depot before the end of April.
Oil pipes to the depot were heavily damaged following a number of attacks on them by the angry youths in April through May 2016.
But disclosing the reopening of the facility on Monday, in a media chat with journalists in Abuja, the NNPC Group Managing Director, Dr. Maikanti Baru, stated that the major pipeline, is now to increase its loading capacity from its initial 200,000 per day to 220,000 barrels per day.
“The need to stem the losses resulting, from the damage of the facility has made it imperative for us to see to it that the old pipeline leading to the depot are replaced.
“NNPC had earlier expressed commitment to increasing Mosimi depot output before it was vandalised, as its optimal performance would ease off loading challenges of the past”, the GMD said.
It was also gathered that the Corporation has also concluded plans to restrict free movement of non essential personnel of both the state owned company and licenced loading firms to check any vandalism in the depot.
Baru also disclosed reports of theft, sabotage and other attacks on oil product pipelines were a major problem for the NNPC in 2016, and expressed delight that the ongoing peace move with the militants would mean that no longer will the oil and gas sector experience the disruption activities in the oil producing areas
But a security expert, Mr. Julius Anakwe, of Jacal Security Services, said the best approach to ensuring lasting peace that could guarantee safety and continuous operation in the Niger Delta, by the oil majors, is for government agencies in charge of the peace move not to take any thing for granted.
“There have been a series of peace talks in the past, what is important is keeping to any promises made to the oil producing region. If Nigeria fails it this time around, it would be a great opportunity lost,” Anakwe said.
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