May 29, 2012 by Chukwudi Akasike, Port Harcourt
Joint Military Task Force has accused oil companies in the country of insincerity in the fight against illegal bunkering in Niger Delta.
Speaking in Port Harcourt on Monday, Commander, Sector two, Operation Pulo Shield, Brig.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, also regretted that one of the companies had yet to take action weeks after the JTF drew its attention to about 56 illegal bunkering points on its facilities.
Buratai, who is also the Brigade Commander, 2 Brigade, Port Harcourt, said oil theft could be stopped if oil companies and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation cooperate in the fight against illegal bunkering.
He said, “I want to assure you that we are going to completely stamp out oil theft in Niger Delta.
“We have had an assessment sometimes back on all the pipelines. We discovered over 56 of those illegal bunkering sites and they belong to an oil company and the NNPC is a major shareholder in that oil company.
“Unfortunately, I have not been told that even one has been picked. So where will you get the solution to oil bunkering?
“The bunkerers will not operate if the oil companies are playing their part very well.”
Spokesman for the Barracks and Sector Two Command of the JTF, Capt Sunday Samuel, said 96 illegal crude refining points in Rivers and Bayelsa states were destroyed by the sector within the month.