Crude Oil Theft: ‘Nigeria lost $2bn in 8 months’, Senate alleges

… Bows to pressure; fails to indict masterminds

The Senate Ad-Hoc Committee meant to investigate the siphoning of the country’s crude oil and the negative impact of the plague on the economy, on Tuesday submitted its findings to plenary.

The findings painstakingly detailed that between January and August 2022, Nigeria lost an unwholesome $2billion, that is, N1.3 trillion to oil thieves.

It said: “Nigeria lost over $2billion to oil theft between January and August 2022, with consequent loss of revenue that would support the country’s fiscal deficits and budget implementation.”

The report, which evidently showed that the committee must have bowed to pressure not to name those behind the stealing of the country’s black gold assets, claimed that efforts in combating the menace has begun yielding results with Forcados Terminal producing 500,000 barrels per day now, as against zero production in the first six months of the year.

The Upper Chamber had on April 14, 2022, constituted a 13 – member Ad – Hoc Committee on Oil Lifting, Theft and the impact on Petroleum Production and Oil Revenues under the Chairmanship of Senator Akpan Bassey, who incidentally, is the Chairman, Senate Committee on Petroleum (Upstream).

Bonny Terminals, according to the report, is also producing 87,000 barrels of oil per day now, as against zero production a couple of months ago due to activities of economic saboteurs.

Parts of the 16 – point recommendations of the Committee as adopted by the Senate are that the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, (NNPCL), should stop undermining Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission, (NUPRC) and Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) from performing their functions.

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