By Edith Ike-Eboh
The Nigerian Police Force says it will strengthen its collaboration with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to ensure a more effective security surveillance and protection over the nation’s oil pipelines.
The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, made the promise on Tuesday, when he visited the Group Managing Director of the corporation, Dr. Maikanti Baru, in Abuja.
Adamu said that the collaboration would help to further strengthen the fight against criminality in the oil and gas sector.
He said that he chose the NNPC as the first organisation to visit after his appointment because of its strategic importance to the economic growth and development of the country.
He said: “We know the position and role NNPC plays in the fight against crime in the country and we know the various challenges that affect its operation.
“The challenge of pipeline vandalism, the problem with transportation of petroleum products across the country, among others.
“The major aim of my visit is to find a way to strengthen the collaboration we already have with the corporation to bring lasting solution to the various problems and challenges.”
The IGP further said that some of the criminal cases in the oil and gas sector with the police would be given speedy attention.
He said: “NNPC as lifeline of the economy needs to be supported to carry out its duty effectively.
“We are going to strategise to see how we can put an end to pipeline vandalism and other security challenges in the sector, ” he added.
Responding, Baru congratulated the IGP on his appointment and urged him to deploy his vast experience in the fight against insecurity and corruption in the country.
“Thank you for recognising the reach and role of the NNPC. We have our presence in all the states and extensive pipelines across the country.
“We have depots, installations, refineries, gas processing plants around the country, which are used to service the energy needs of Nigerians.
“Visiting us has shown how professional you are and knowing that the corporation remains the major lifeline of the economy and needs to be protected,” the NNPC boss siad.
He gave the assurance that the corporation would avail the police with more information on the security challenges and other crime-related issues affecting its operations.
Baru said that the corporation had continued to fight fraudulent practices, including the use of non existent crude oil contracts by unscrupulous elements to dupe unsuspecting people.
“We will like your office to help us to nip these kinds of criminalities in the bud.
“I deeply appreciate this visit and believe that you will take the police and fight against crime and criminality to the next level.
“We will support you to make sure that we fish out those criminals in the system and bring them to justice,” Baru added. (NAN)