Every section of Nigerian society is complicit in the theft of millions of barrels, the head of state oil company NNPC Ltd; adding that make-shift pipelines and stolen fuel had even been found in churches and mosques.
Large-scale theft from the nation’s pipelines has throttled exports, forced some companies to shut in production. Thereby crippled the country’s finances.
NNPC chief Mele Kyari said he was not accusing institutions, including government, but at virtually every level of Nigerian society, individuals were siphoning off a total of around 200,000 barrels per day (bpd) from what is typically Africa’s largest exporter.
It was not immediately clear if the government had found crude oil, in addition to fuel, in those places.
The impact on exports is a reduction of 700,000 bpd, Kyari said. Because, theft had forced at least 700 “lock-ins” of oil production.
NNPC has engaged companies, including those owned by ex-militants, to stem theft, and Kyari said the nation’s anti-graft agency was also following the cash and would prosecute those involved.