The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) is looking to stem crude and petroleum products theft across the country by deploying drone technology, and equipping the Nigerian Navy with vessels for monitoring Nigerian waters.
According to NNPC, the Group Managing Director of the Corporation, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu announced this during a meeting with the Chief of Defense Staff, General Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin in the Defence Headquarters, Abuja.
Dr. Kachikwu said the deployment of the drone technology has become imperative due to the huge loss of crude and petroleum products to oil thieves.
He said that due to the high incidences of pipeline vandalism, the Corporation cannot pump crude and petroleum products through its network of pipelines across the country noting that crude theft is in excess of 250,000 barrels per day which represents one fifth of daily production.
The NNPC’s managing director said that the renewed collaboration would enable the Nigerian Army Engineering Corps take over the pipelines surveillance from the Nigeria Police Force stressing that the Engineering Corps would also be saddled with the responsibility of maintaining the pipelines.
He further said that the NNPC was willing to equip the Nigerian Navy with boats that would enable it track and monitor every oil bearing vessel that comes in and out of the Nigeria water ways, noting the importance of deploying every weapon to battle the thefts.
The NNPC says that the Chief of Defense Staff, General Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin expressed the readiness of the Nigerian military to support the NNPC to secure its oil installations across the country stressing that the NNPC and the Nigerian military are all critical stakeholders in the project called Nigeria.
General Olonisakin concluded that the collaboration would bring to an end the issue of crude oil theft and pipeline vandalism within the shortest possible time.