FG to investigate theft in Elumelu’s $1billion oil well
AN OIL well belonging to Tony Elumelu is currently under investigation The $1.1 billion oil facility was rigged with pipes by oil thieves, which siphoned crude from it Tony Elumelu had in the past lamented oil theft, saying that about 95 per cent of Nigeria’s oil is stolen.
The Federal Government of Nigeria is investigating the largest oil and gas field financing project of approximately $1.1 billion, OML 17, belonging to billionaire Tony Elumelu. The investigation follows an uncovering of illegal oil bunkering connected to the facility. A devastated oil field in the Niger Delta The investigation comes after the Nigeria Security, and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) found an illegal local refinery at the Otamiri-Etche, Etche Local Government area of Rivers State, according to media report.
The illegal refinery steals crude oil for OML 17 fields belonging to Heirs Holdings Oil and Gas Limited, owned by Elumelu. Heirs Holdings acquired 45 per cent of the oil well from Shell Total and Eni in 2021. During the acquisition, the oil field produced about 27,000 barrels of crude oil daily and steadily increased to 40,000 barrels daily in seven months. Reports say the NSCDC smashed the bunkering oil syndicate following a tip-off from residents. The culprits tapped into Heir Holding Oil and Gas facility via the pipeline bulk delivery and stole oil through pipes to their illegal refinery. Other reports say the NSCDC is currently interrogating workers at the facility. NSCDC vows to prosecute thieves The development was confirmed by NSCDC Commandant in Rivers State, Besong Ogar. Besong said the perpetrators fabricated pipes across the area despite the massive expanse of land, stating that the agency has commenced an investigation into the matter and that the mystery would soon be unraveled.
The facility contains Agbada, Obigbo, Obigbo North, Otamiri, and Umuchem. It also contains facilities that can produce about 150,000 barrels daily. It is estimated that gas production at the facility is less than 50 million standard cubic feet daily, estimated at reserves of 1.2 billion barrels of oil. Gas production on the field is less than 50 million standard cubic feet per day, with estimated 2P reserves of 1.2 billion barrels of oil. Elumelu laments oil theft In 2022, Elumelu decried that oil theft in Nigeria is about 95%. The billionaire narrated some of his colleague’s ordeal and said that apart from the economy, Nigerians are now scared because of insecurity in the country, a ThisDay report said. He said: “How can we lose over 95 percent of oil production to thieves? Look at the Bonny Terminal, which should receive over 200,000bpd barrels of crude oil daily; instead, it receives less than 3,000 barrels, leading the operator, Shell, to declare force majeure.
Nigeria cannot meet its OPEC production quota because of low investment but because of theft, which is simple!” “Meanwhile, oil-producing countries are smiling as their foreign reserves rise. What is Nigeria’s problem? We need to hold our leaders more accountable.” Crude oil theft: Time to name and prosecute those behind the menace media reports trending in the last few weeks reveal the discovery of illegal oil pipelines in the Niger Delta, where crude oil thieves siphoned millions of barrels of the product to be sold to foreign collaborators.
Reacting to the discoveries, the Chief Executive Officer of the NNPCL, Mele Kyari announced that the company had deactivated the illegal refineries, taken down 273 wooden boats, and ruined 374 illegal reservoirs and 1,561 metal tanks. Ex-militant leader, Government Ekpemupolo, also known as Tompolo, whose company was contracted by the Federal Government to monitor crude oil pipelines, in collaboration with other security agents, announced the discovery of 58 illegal oil points in some states in the Niger Delta.
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