Abuja - The NNPC has pledged to collaborate with other agencies in efforts to stem crude oil theft in Nigeria.
A statement issued by Mr Fidel Pepple, NNPC’s Group General Manager (Public Affairs), in Abuja on Sunday said that Mr Andrew Yakubu, the Group Managing Director of the NNPC, made the promise.
The statement said that Yakubu, who made the pledge when members of the Inter-Agency Maritime Operation Committee paid him a courtesy visit, bemoaned the activities of unscrupulous individuals who engaged in oil theft.
``The maritime industry significantly impacts on our industry and we really do appreciate the efforts of Mr President to address issues that border on crude oil theft.
``We are ready to support the various initiatives of the Federal Government to stem illegal bunkering in the maritime industry,” the statement quoted Yakubu as saying.
It said that illegal bunkering and crude oil theft had negative impact on the economy and the environment, stressing that it should, therefore, be stamped out.
It said that the NNPC chief lamented that several thousands of barrels of crude oil were lost to illegal bunkering everyday.
``The blocking of this leakage would go a long way in efforts to improve the standard of living of Nigerians.’’
The statement also said that Rear Admiral E. O. Ogboh, the Chairman of the Inter-Agency Maritime Operation Committee, said that the committee was established in June.
``He explained that it was set up to address illegal bunkering in the nation’s maritime waters,’’ it added.
The statement also quoted Mr Leke Oyewole, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Maritime, as saying the committee was set up to ensure adequate collaboration among all agencies of government in the nation's maritime industry.
Members of the committee were drawn from the NNPC, Nigerian Navy, Air Force, Customs Service, Police, State Security Service and the judiciary.