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Blackout Looms In Lagos, As Union Pickets Electricity Firm

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Customers of Ikeja Electric Plc (IE) may soon be thrown into total blackout, as members of the National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) have continued to lay siege at the company’s headquarters in Alausa, Ikeja and all its other offices across Lagos and its environs.
Members of the union, who claimed that the picketing of IE followed the disengagement of about 40 members of staff, have forcibly shut down operations at the offices thereby barring access to IE personnel and customers who have attempted to gain access to the offices.
According to Ikeja Electric, the recent disengagement of staff was due to varying actions, which are not in furtherance of the overall company objectives.
According to the management, The protest is coming in the heels of the promotions of about 300 employees last week and the recruitment of over 500 new employees in the past one year.
The promotion exercise cut across all cadres of staff, including members of the respective unions in the organisation.
Speaking on the development, Head, Corporate Communications, Felix Ofulue, described protest as self-serving and dismissed the motive for embarking on the protest.
“When NUEE chooses to cripple socio-economic activities of over a million households, for issues that can be resolved through dialogue, one then wonders if the motives are as selfless as they claim.
“How do you plunge a country’s commercial nerve centre into darkness because of a few of your members who have been separated from the business for cogent reasons, It is really appalling.
“ It’s an abuse of privilege to picket”. Imagine that our employees in Alausa Injection Sub-Station were chased out of the facility by the union and they had to shut down nine feeders that supply power to Ikeja and its environs on safety grounds. This has resulted in an immediate blackout for at least 3000 customers”, he said.
Ofulue further apologised to customers for the disruption of service by NUEE and promised that they would continue to work with stakeholders to ensure that the company continues to improve and provide quality service to their customers.

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Oil & Energy

Nigeria Lost $750m To Oil Theft In 2019 – NNPC

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The Nigerian National Pe
troleum Corporation (NNPC) says the nation lost about 750 million dollars to oil theft in 2019.
The NNPC Group Managing Director, Malam Mele Kyari disclosed this in a statement signed by the Acting Spokesman for the corporation Mr Samson Makoji in Abuja on Tuesday.
Kyari said this when members of the Executive Intelligence Management Course 13 of the National Institute for Security Studies (NISS) visited the NNPC Towers.
He decried the growing activities of oil thieves and pirates which he described as a threat to the operations of the corporation.
The GMD who spoke on the topic: “Piracy in the Gulf of Guinea; Issues, Challenges for International Trade, National Security and Sustainable Development of Member States”, said that any threat to the corporation’s operations was a direct threat to the very survival of Nigeria as nation.
This, he said, was because of the strategic role of the corporation as an enabler of the economy.
He listed other security challenges facing the corporation to include vandalism of oil and gas infrastructure and kidnapping of personnel.
According to him, there is a deep connection between the various shades of insecurity challenges as they were all linked to what is happening in the Gulf of Guinea and the entire maritime environment.
He called for a concerted effort and synergy to secure oil and gas operations for the economic survival of the country.
The NNPC boss re-assured that in spite of the increase in demand for fossil oil  crude oil would still remain relevant.
“Even by 2050, fossil fuel would account for 80 per cent of the energy mix, and there would still be consumption of at least, 100 million barrels of oil per day.
“ We are determined to remain relevant in the long term,” he assured.
In his presentation, NNPC Chief Operating Officer, Downstream, Mr Yemi Adetunji said in 2016, the Gulf of Guinea accounted for more than half of the global kidnappings for ransom, with 34 seafarers kidnapped out of 62 cases worldwide.
He said the corporation was working closely with security agencies to tackle the security challenges, and cited the “Operation Kurombe” that was recently conducted by the Nigerian Navy at the Atlas Cove as an example of such collaborative efforts.
Also, the Executive Director, National Institute of security Studies, Dr Ayodele Adeleke, called for synergy among the security agencies to tackle the security challenges not only in the Gulf of Guinea, but in the Nigerian Petroleum Industry generally.
The visiting team was drawn from 18 agencies within and outside Nigeria.

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DPR To Transfer Five Revoked Oil Blocks

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The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has transferred Oil Mining Licence (OML) 98 to the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), stating the federal government is considering transferring five others, which were recently revoked.
DPR had earlier revoked the previously operated by Pan Ocean Oil Corporation and five others belonging to Allied Energy Resources Nigeria (OML 120 and 121); Express Petroleum and Gas Company (OML 108); Cavendish Petroleum Nigeria (OML 110), and Summit Oil International (OPL 206).
The federal government had ordered the revocation, justifying the decision as a move to “recover legacy debts” owed by the companies operating the licences.
In an event to transfer the asset, Director of DPR, Sarki Auwalu, who stressed that move was in the economic interest of Nigerians, especially the shareholders, stated that there are about 42 million barrels oil deposit in the block.He added that there are 20 million barrels of condensate as well as 393 billion standard cubic feet of gas.
Auwalu warned NPDC to put the asset to best use, stressing that government would not fail jail individuals, who treat the oil assets with levity.”If there any failure we will not hesitate to jail whoever is responsible,” Auwalu said. He said government is interested in helping investors make returns on investment, stressing that organisation must take advantage of alternative dispute resolutions instead leaving investment in limbo.
“We are not for any legal battle. Everything can be settled with alternative dispute resolutions because we need our assets to work for the interest of stakeholders,” Auwalu stated, while urging investors to be proactive and always consider economic value.
While reassuring the regulators of Pan Ocean’s commitment to a smooth transition, Mr. Olajide Ishola, chief operating officer, Pan Ocean said, “since last year when the revocation of the asset came into effect, a lot of things were left in limbo. This meeting set the tone for the handover and future of the asset. In the months ahead, we will continue to work closely with regulators to ensure that there is no significant disruption in production as a result of change in ownership.”
Pan Ocean has engaged in economic activity on OML 98 since 1973. Within the period, the company created jobs, contributed to the development of critical national oil and gas assets, and improved infrastructure in host communities.

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RSG’s Intervention Averts Fuel Scarcity  In Rivers

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The timely intervention of the Rivers State Government, yesterday saved the state from fuel scarcity in the state.
The organised petroleum sector in the state comprising the Independent Petroleum Marketers  Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), the Petroleum Tanker Drivers Association, the Licence Petroleum Station owners and the National Union of Petroleum and Natural Energy Workers(NUPENG) had planned to begin a strike action, yesterday.
The petroleum service providers in the state had threatened to shut down their operations following alleged impoundment of their product laden trucks by the Army and incessant arrest of their members by task force operators.
The strike action which would have thrown the entire state into a round of fuel scarcity was however,  averted by the state government in the wee hours of yesterday.
Th state government represented by  the state Commissioner for Energy and Natural Resources, Dr Peter Medee quickly entered into a peace negotiation meeting with the leadership of NUPENG, IPMAN  and other stakeholders to broker peace.
The meeting which commenced on Sunday evening lasted till the early hours of yesterday.
Dr  Medee who led the Rivers State Government team said the government waded into the looming crisis to avert the consequences of the strike.
According to him, “the Rivers State Government engaged all the affected parties and stakeholders in series of consultations to arrest the situation and avert the impending industrial action”, adding that “the Rivers State Governor, Chief Barr Nyesom Ezenwo Wike is committed towards creating the enabling environment for business activities to strive in the state”.
Chairman of the Port Harcourt branch of IPMAN, Comrade Obele also confirmed the suspension of the strike, saying members of the association have been directed to resume full operations while the security agencies have agreed to release the impounded trucks.
Former Chairman of IPMAN, Port Harcourt branch, Comrade Emmanuel Inimgba, who commented on the matter decried a situation where petroleum marketers were targets of arrests and victims of insecurity and called for lasting solution to the challenges.
A directive of the national leadership of NUPENG has aso urged its members in the state to resume full operations.

 

Taneh Beemene

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