On Saturday, a commission sent by President Bola Tinubu to investigate oil theft in the Niger Delta discovered an unauthorized oil connection.
The illicit connection identified in Owaza, Abia State, was costing the government an estimated $7.2 million every month, according to a statement issued by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL).
The team’s observations of clandestine refineries and environmental destruction, NNPCL noted, resulted in significant economic losses for the country.
The group is led by Malam Muhammed Badaru, the Minister of Defense, and includes the heads of the armed services as well as Sen. Heineken Lokpobiri, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Oil).
Mele Kyari, Group Chief Executive Officer, NNPC Ltd.; Nuhu Ribadu, National Security Adviser; Ekperipe Ekpo, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Gas).
The team also includes the Commander of “Operation Delta Safe,” Rear Admiral Olusegun Ferreira, security agency operatives, and CEOs of oil and gas industry regulatory bodies.
In Owaza, Abia, on the Trans-Niger Pipeline’s right of way, the crew saw numerous illegal connections that had been cut.
In a statement, Badaru said, “We are ready to do whatever it takes for a peaceful Niger Delta,” adding that he wants the culprits to “cease and desist from crude oil theft and economic sabotage.”