The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) says it has marked its pipelines to avert vandalism and fire outbreaks to sustain the current steady supply of petroleum products nationwide.
The Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Dr Maikanti Baru, said this while receiving a delegation of the Occupational Safety and Health Association, (OSHA) UK, Nigeria Chapter, at the NNPC Towers, in Abuja on Tuesday.
In a statement by Mr Ndu Ughamadu, NNPC Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Baru said the corporation would continue to monitor its pipelines and collaborate with the law enforcement agencies to safeguard such critical national asset.
He said that in line with safety standards, NNPC pipelines right-of-way across all locations were clearly marked to keep the public away from the facilities so that they do not come to harm.
"In our various pipelines running across several kilometers and locations, right-of-way is indicated to show that people should not tamper with the facility because of the danger that is involved.
"This is done to ensure that when there is safety breach, we have access to the affected spot and intervene accordingly.
"We will use this opportunity to call on pipeline vandals to please keep away from our pipeline because they are not carrying liquid that can easily be handled like water.
"We are calling on the general public that when they see the sign on the pipeline, they should not tamper with it in their own interest and that of the nation," Baru said.
He said any vandal would be handed over to law enforcement agents to face appropriate sanctions, adding that in the Port-Harcourt-Aba pipeline incident, one suspect was apprehended and handed over to the authorities.
Baru urged members of the public to support NNPC by reporting any suspicious activity around pipelines and other oil and gas facilities, stressing that the Corporation, on its own part, would do everything possible to ensure the safety of lives and property around its facilities.
Speaking , the leader of the delegation and Regional President of OSHA, Nigeria Branch, Dr Dalhatu Ahmed, stated that the purpose of the visit was to carry Baru along in the drive to ensure safety of workers and equipment in view of the position occupied by the NNPC as one of the largest employer of labour in the country and major revenue-earner.
Ahmed lauded the NNPC boss for his numerous initiatives at ensuring the safety of staff and assets across the corporation's value chain.
"I want to commend the efforts of the GMD as far as safety of lives and property is concerned in the corporation.
"It is interesting to see that the NNPC has done a lot in terms of safety. Safety is everybody's business as it is a multi-dimensional issue that requires multi-dimensional approach," Dalhatu said.
Baru and the NNPC General Manager, Health, Safety and Environment, Mr Ahmed Shehu were conferred with fellowship of the association.