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BAYELSA GOVT SET UP COMMITTEE TO FIGHT ILLEGAL BUNKERING

By NBF News
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The Bayelsa State Government has set up a tripartite committee to arrest illegal bunkering in the state. The committee called the Investment Recovery Team was approved by the state executive council and is made up of Bayelsa State Government officials, representatives of oil companies and security agencies.

According to the Overseer, Ministry of Information and Orientation, Hon. Nathan Egba, the tripartite committee is imperative due to the huge losses incurred by oil companies operating in the state especially Nigeria Agip Oil Company (NAOC,) to activities of bunkerers.

Egba, who disclosed this in an interview, stated that representatives of AGIP made a presentation during the executive council meeting where they revealed their major challenge in meeting their target of production.

He said the oil company is worried that what it produces at its different locations does not correspond with what is being transported to its storage facilities located in Brass. His words: 'The management of AGIP came and did a presentation on the state of their production in Bayelsa territory. It was observed that their production level has drastically reduced again in recent times due to activities of bunkerers. Government has decided to set up a tripartite committee called Investment Recovery Team, comprising of government officials, security agencies and representatives of oil companies to formulate a strategy to arrest the situation.

The biggest problem is that there is a huge difference between what is being produce at their different locations and what is being transported to their storage facilities in Brass. Most times they produce about 55,000 barrels, and what they end up receiving is about 38,000. So AGIP is worried about what happens to the difference.'

Egba also disclosed that the executive council, in order to further demonstrate its commitment to transparency and accountability, had approved the Bayelsa Expenditure and Income Transparency Initiative (BEITI) Bill to be forwarded to the Bayelsa State House of Assembly for passage into law.

While stating that the Timipre Sylva-led administration had approved the construction of 2,080 of two sets of different housing units under the Public Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement, he revealed that the recent fishing trawlers, FT1, Patience Jonathan and FT2, Margaret Alamieyeseigha, acquired by the state government had set sail on their inaugural fishing expedition.

Egba, who said cabinet members in the state are excited over the inauguration of the first Ijaw man as president of Nigeria, said Governor Timipre Sylva had enjoined all cabinet members to unite and provide a strong home support for President Goodluck Jonathan in his mission to deliver the dividends of democracy to Nigerians.

'The governor called for the total support for President Goodluck Jonathan and enjoined executive members to unite and work as a team to give Jonathan a strong home support to ensure commitment to the vision of the Federal Government,' Egba added.