Jonas Ike, Abuja
The House of Representatives on Thursday set up an Ad- hoc Committee to launch thorough investigation into the amount of crude oil theft alleged to have been stolen from Nigeria.
At plenary, Deputy Majority Leader of the House, Hon. Peter Akpatason was announced as Chairman by Deputy Speaker Hon Idris Wase, who presided over the session..
The Committee is mandated to among other things; determine the daily quantity of crude oil sale in the international market, as well as the daily quantity reserve for the country’s refineries.
Moreover, it was given the mandate to thoroughly investigate the level of possible environmental damage occasioned by the alleged theft, it was further determine the volume of daily crude extraction in the country.
This was sequel to adoption of a motion by Hon. Chukwuka Umeoji, who reported that Nigeria loses about five trillion naira daily to crude oil theft, a sum he said the “government desperately needs to finance the budget”.
According to him, “about 22 million barrels of crude oil, accounting for about N1.3 trillion worth of crude oil was stolen in the Niger Delta in 2019 alone.
The lawmaker noted that apart from the economic losses to the country, occasioned by the theft, there was also environmental damage due to breaches on oil pipelines, and the the incidences are on the rise. “It is a problem very dangerous to the economy of the country”, he submitted.
The Ad-hoc Committee’s findings is expected in the House after eight weeks, for further legislative action.