Story By GLADYS JOHNSON
……….Kachikwu says Refineries not for sale In a bid to ensure lean, efficient and profitable operations, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) is to commence the unbundling of the Pipelines and Products Marketing Company Ltd into three different companies.
The Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu made this disclosure during an official tour of the Okrika Jetty and the Port Harcourt Refining Company Limited on Wednesday.
Dr. Kachikwu stated that the PPMC would be split into a pipelines company that would focus primarily on the maintenance of the over five thousand kilometers pipelines of the Corporation; a storage company that would maintain all the over 23 depots and a products marketing company that would market and sell petroleum products.
He informed that the move would ensure that the right set of skills are rightly positioned and the number of leakages in terms of pipelines break and products loss are reduced to the barest minimum.
The GMD noted that the ongoing phased rehabilitation of all the state owned refineries would be given an accelerated vigour with the aim of reducing petroleum products importation into the country, adding that at full capacity, all the refineries could supply only 20 million litres of premium motor spirit otherwise known as petrol on a daily basis.
Dr. Kachikwu affirmed that the refineries would not be sold but joint venture partners with established track records of success in refining would be invited to support the running of the refineries in order to ensure efficiency.
He stated that efforts are in top gear to fix all the crude and petroleum products pipelines across the country stressing that the Nigerian Airforce would be engaged to provide aerial survey of the pipelines, the Nigerian Army Engineering corps to fix and police the pipelines and the Nigerian Navy to provide marine surveillance for the network of pipelines.
Dr. Kachikwu commended the NNPC’s Engineers for the successful execution of the ongoing phased rehabilitation of the refineries while urging them to prepare a replacement programmes for obsolete spare parts of all the Corporation’s installations in order to avoid intermittent shut down of facilities.
Speaking in a similar vein, the Managing Director of the PHRC, Dr. Bafred Audu Enjugu said the ongoing phased rehabilitation of the company cost a little less than $10 million adding that the job was holistically carried out by indigenous Engineers without any foreign support.
On her part, the Managing Director of Pipelines and Products Marketing Company Limited, Mrs. Esther Namdi-Ogbue assured the GMD that the Company would think outside the box to provide solutions to all the challenges confronting the Company.