Federal Government has been urged to without delay provide solutions to massive oil theft in the Niger Delta area.
Naija News reports that the advisory was given by members of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) on Thursday, September 9, 2022.
Members of the union have been seen in some parts of the country including Abuja, Warri in Delta State, Kaduna and Port Harcourt in Rivers State, protesting the lingering oil theft, saying it could shut down oil production in Nigeria in the next 30 days should the government fail to address the menace.
If succeeded in shutting down oil production for 30 days, Naija News understands Nigeria could lose about 30.03 million barrels of crude, valued at an estimated N1.37trn.
Announcing the union’s intention at a rally held earlier at the Delta State Governor’s Office Annexe in Warri, the PENGASSAN Zonal Chairman, Prince Audu Osihiokhamele, alleged that some notable government officials are involved in the business of crude oil theft in the country.
He said: “They say they load vessels, but we don’t see any. Is it a needle?” Osihiokhamele stressed that failure by the government to act swiftly to find lasting solutions to the menace would push PENGASSAN into taking more drastic actions.
“We will shut down the country for 30 days until we all come to the round table to unravel the mysteries surrounding the thefts,” Osihiokhamele stated.
He added, “PENGASSAN will resort to shutting down production for 30 days by withdrawing members, both onshore and offshore, wherever they are producing crude, should the government fail to hearken to this warning.”
Naija News learnt that members of the union arrived at Delta State Governor’s Office Annexe in Warri on Thursday morning to display their displeasures over the continued theft.
While displaying placards carrying different inscriptions, the union members called on the government to checkmate the ugly trend, which they said had virtually crumbled the national economy.
They lamented that Shell and Mobil had been compelled to relocate and divest following unbearable crude oil theft coupled with pipeline vandalism.