- Kazeem Badmus
Members of the House of Representatives have vowed to unveil the identities of those behind oil theft in the country.
The ad hoc committee set up to investigate crude oil theft and loss of revenue from gas said this while speaking with newsmen ahead of its investigative hearing slated for Sept. 7.
Chairman of the committee, Kabiru Rurum, said the oil sector remained the major source of revenue for the country, adding that it was determined that the investigation would not went like the previous ones.
He noted that oil and gas are the major areas where the country gets its resources but the problem of oil theft has continued to go from bad to worse on a daily basis.
He said, “The purpose of the committee is to reveal who and who are the architects of what is going on in the area of crude oil theft.”
Rurum explained that apportioning blame to security agencies would not suffice, adding that stakeholders in the oil sectors should be held responsible including Chevron, Shell, and communities, among others.
“We need to identify the culprits, this is the purpose of the investigation. Everybody including critical stakeholders should come and tell us their side of the story,” Rurum said.
He said the modalities and ways to stop or minimise theft in the oil sector should be suggested by all stakeholders which was the main purpose of the committee.
He said the committee had invited the Nigerian Navy as the custodian of the nation’s water, Airforce, Civil Defence, and Police Intelligence Agency, among others.
According to him, the challenges confronting the oil sector and the probable solution would be discussed.
He said the Norwegian Embassy which had earlier promised Nigeria to assist in three areas to curtail oil theft had been invited to proffer a solution.
He said its recommendation would be firm because the government knew that there were serious challenges in the sector, adding that it would work in synergy with the National Security Adviser.