Kyari Seeks Special Court For Oil Thieves

Group Managing Director (GMD) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, Mele Kyari, has canvassed the establishment of a special court for the prosecution of illegal refinery operators.

While decrying the rise in crude oil theft in the country, he disclosed that over $4 billion of the product value was lost to illegal refinery operators in 2021 with another $1.5 billion lost so far in 2022.

He said that anytime there is an increase in the price of crude oil in the global market, the activities of oil thieves increase, thus causing a decline in production output.

The GMD addressed the House of Representatives Committee on Petroleum (Upstream), yesterday in Abuja, where he revealed that the country currently produces 1.49 million barrels per day

“This is worrisome. There are so many illegal settlements along with all our terminals, and the number is increasing every day. It will be very important if the government sets up a special court for the fast trial of illegal refinery operators in this country,” he said.

Kyari blamed the reduction in production output on the “massive act of vandals and thieves,” stressing the need for the government to adopt measures that would cushion the adverse effects of the economic sabotage on the economy.

He lamented the degradation of the environment in oil-producing areas due to the vandals’ activities, saying Illegal oil settlements are dotted across the corporation’s terminals.