The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) has warned that the rising cases of crude oil theft and pipeline vandalism in the Niger Delta will worsen Nigeria’s economic woes unless the Federal Government acts decisively to stop the criminal act
Publicity Secretary of the party, Alhaji Lai Mohammed who made the remarks yesterday said oil theft and pipeline vandalisation has cost Nigeria about 12 billion US dollars per annum adding that oil theft has peaked at about 350,000 barrels of per day – higher than the quantity of oil produced daily in either Gabon or Equatorial Guinea.
”On Feb. 24th 2013, we raised the alarm that the country’s economy was heading for the rocks, citing the skyrocketing cost of oil production, from 4 dollars per barrel in 2002 to 35 dollars per barrel presently; the massive corruption in the oil sector; the sharp fall in the discovery of new oil and gas reserves due to the low investment in the sector, and the challenge posed by alternative sources of global supply of oil and gas.
”For raising that alarm, we were pilloried by those who acted more out of emotion than facts. Today, we say the situation is actually worse than we had thought, exacerbated by pipeline vandalism and crude oil theft which have reached an unsustainable level. Add this to the resurgence of attacks by the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND), and we are compelled to cry out again,” , he said in a statement, adding that the action taken in recent times by two major oil companies, Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) and Nigerian Agip Oil Company (NAOC), is the clearest indication of the seriousness of the situation. See more in features.