Lagos — The federal government has applauded Waltersmith Petroman Oil Limited and the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) for their effective partnership that led to the record completion of the Waltersmith 5000 barrels per day modular refinery within two years.
Minister of information and culture, Mr. Lai Mohammed conveyed the commendation after touring the project located at Ibigwe, Ohaji/Egbema LGA, Imo State, in company of the governor of Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodinma, the minister of state for education, Hon Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba and the executive secretary of NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote.
The modular refinery was started in October 2018 and will commence operations on October 14, 2020, loading out 23 trucks of refined products per day, having concluded off-take arrangements with select firms.
The minister stated that the completion of Waltersmith modular refinery and conceptualisation of similar projects in Bayelsa were key achievements of President Muhammed Buhari's administration, adding that, modular refineries only became a reality under the present administration despite years of rhetoric by previous governments.
In his remarks, the executive secretary of NCDMB expressed pride that the board moved quickly to invest 30 per cent equity in the Waltersmith modular refinery project with the approval of its board's governing council. He hinted that the project had several benefits, including; generation of direct, indirect, and induced employment opportunities for management staff, plant operators, technicians, drivers, cleaners, suppliers, security personnel and others.
Similarly, the chairman of Waltersmith Petroman Oil Limited, Mr. Abdulrasaq Isah, indicated that the company decided to embark on the modular project as a strategy to address incessant pipeline vandalism and theft of its crude oil products. The project will also ensure import substitution, energy security for the nation, lower of the company's operating cost and create lots of jobs, he revealed.