Nigeria’s Refineries Record High Performance

RefineriesA financial and operations report just released by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) shows that Nigeria’s three refineries witnessed a dramatic increase in refining capacity utilization in March 2016 for the first time in eight months.

The refineries are the Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company, Port Harcourt Refining Company, and the Warri Refining and Petrochemical Company.

The report, explains that they processed crude at an average capacity utilization of 17.51% in March compared to 1.84% average capacity utilization the previous month.

The NNPC attributes the improvement to success achieved in the repairs of vandalized crude pipelines feeding the refineries.

Capacity utilisation of the refineries is expected to rise further in the coming months following the re-commissioning of the Escravos-Warri-Kaduna pipeline.

The Minister of State for Petroleum, Mr Ibe Kachikwu, on Tuesday again apologized to Nigerians for the prevailing long queues for petrol saying all is being done to bring the situation to normalcy.

Mr Kachikwu alongside five other ministers rendered account of what has been done in terms of government policies since the inauguration of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration during the second federal government town hall meeting in Kaduna State.

 

Oil Workers Shut Down Refinery, NNPC Facilities In Rivers

NNPCThe Port Harcourt refinery and all NNPC facilities have been shut down in Rivers State following the controversies surrounding the purported unbundling of the oil corporation.

This was confirmed to Channels Television on Wednesday by the Group Secretary of the National Union Of Petroleum & Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), Uche Amara, in Abuja where the union leaders are currently meeting.

According to him, the unions were not just concerned about the unbundling procedure which lacked due process, but also other labour matters that needed the attention of the Federal government.

‘Down Tool’

The ‘down tool’ is coming after oil workers shut down the operations of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) nationwide until further notice.

The decision was reached on Tuesday at a meeting of the Group Executive Councils of NUPENG and Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN).

Meanwhile, oil workers have shut down Kaduna refinery over the purported unbundling of the NNPC, asking the government to reverse the decision.

Channels Television’s correspondent in Kaduna State said that the workers locked up the refinery gate, preventing management staff and others from entering the refinery.

In an attempt to address the issues that had resulted after media reports linked him to the statement about the purported unbundling, the Minister of Petroleum, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, said that the NNPC would not be unbundled but reorganised.

Oil Workers Shut Down Kaduna Refinery

Refinery-KadunaOil workers have shut down the Kaduna refinery over the unbundling of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

Our correspondent in Kaduna State said the workers have locked up the refinery gate, preventing management staff and others from entering into the refinery.

The oil workers want government to reverse the decision.

The Group Executive Councils of Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) and Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN), had in a meeting on Tuesday directed its members to truncate NNPC operations nationwide .

After “extensively discussing the pronouncement”, they “observed that the GMD/HMSP totally disregarded due process and failed to engage stakeholders.

“Hence, from midnight today (Tuesday, March 8), all NNPC locations will be shut down completely until further notice. Further directives will be communicated accordingly”, a statement jointly signed by the Unions said.

Refineries Produce 6.76 Million Litres Of Petrol Daily, Says NNPC

Kaduna-Refinery-plant-refinery-nnpcThe Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has announced that the nation’s three refineries in Kaduna, Port Harcourt and Warri have attained a combined daily production of over 6.76 million litres of petrol.

In a statement released by the corporation, it noted that petrol production is projected to increase to over 10 million litres per day by the end of this month.

According to a breakdown given by the NNPC, the Port Harcourt refinery, which resumed last week, is producing 4.09 million litres.

The Kaduna refinery is contributing 1.29 million litres, while the Warri refinery, which was re-streamed on Sunday, is producing 1.38 million litres.

The NNPC added that the Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) volume from the refineries will help stabilise the fuel supply and distribution situation in the country.

Kaduna Transporters Hike Fares As Petrol Scarcity Bites Harder

KadunaThree days to the Christmas celebration, people travelling to various parts of the country from Kaduna and environs for the festivity are groaning with the increasing scarcity of petrol.

This is due the increase of transport fare by commercial drivers who ironically are also complaining of shortage of passengers as a result of the fuel scarcity and increase in fares.

They have called on the Federal government to urgently address the problem in order to reduce their sufferings.

Most filling stations across the state capital have been locked up due to the scarcity of petrol, while those that opened for business sold the product at over 80% of the normal price.

While black marketers of petrol sell a four litre gallon of petrol as high as 1,000 naira, most of the filling stations sell a litre of the product for 200 naira to struggling and impatient motorists and those buying in jerry cans.

The petrol profiteers ruled as long as men of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) were away, but when they storm the stations, they force the managers to revert to the approved pump price or in some cases seal them up.

Transport fare from Kaduna to Akwa-Ibom State and some parts of the south east that used to cost about 6,000 naira has risen to 8,000 naira. Commuters have said that the price is likely to rise if nothing is done by the relevant authorities to address the fuel scarcity.

With no end in sight to the scarcity, many families planning to travel to their villages for the Christmas celebration may have to either suspend their trip or pay through their nose due to the hike in transport fare.

With the cheering news that the Kaduna Refinery and Petrochemical Company has resumed production after it was closed  for repairs some months ago, many Nigerians are appealing to the relevant authorities to address all knotty issues that have brought this unending nightmare to the nation.

Kaduna Refinery Resumes Production

Kaduna-Refinery-plantThe Kaduna Refinery and Petrochemical Company has resumed production of petrol four months after it was closed for repairs.

The Managing Director of the company, Saidu Mohammed, who disclosed this to Channels Television in Kaduna, said that the plant, which was closed in September, came back on stream last Saturday ahead of the December deadline for Nigeria’s four refineries to return to full production.

The restart of production at the Kaduna refinery should be a cheering news for Nigerians, who have endured months of scarcity of petrol.

Mohammed explained that the plant, which is getting supply of crude oil from Escravos in Warri, is currently producing at an average 1.5 million litres of Premium Motor Spirit per day.

The MD said that with the resumption of production, the Pipelines and Product Marketing Company (PPMC) is expected to commence trucking of refined products within the week. He added that at least 50 trucks are expected to be loading the substance for supply to the northern part of the nation and beyond on daily basis.

Mr Mohammed further explained that the Kaduna refinery is working in collaboration with the PPMC and Department of Petroluem Resources (DPR) to ensure that products are properly supplied across the region, to cushion the effect of the scarcity of petrol.

While appealing to the public to exercise patience, he gave the assurance that the long queues across the country would soon disappear as soon as the PPMC commences trucking.

Prior to its closure in September, Kaduna refinery had stopped working for most part of the year, except briefly in July and August, when its utilisation capacity dropped to about 2.6 per cent and 10.5 per cent respectively, according the NNPC monthly operational report for October.

The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, had issued a 90-day ultimatum to the managements of the four refineries shortly after his appointment in August.

Government To Build New Refineries, Says NNPC Boss

kachikwu-nnpcThe Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC),  says there is no plan by the present administration to kill the corporation, but that “the government is making plans to fix the existing refineries and thereafter, build new ones” to compliment the existing ones across the oil-rich nation.

The Group Managing Director (GMD) of the NNPC, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, explained that rather than selling the existing refineries, the government would embrace the option of increasing their capacity through massive turn around maintenance.

Dr. Kachikwu made the disclosure to reporters on Wednesday during a visit to the Kaduna Refinery in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

He was accompanied by the Managing Director of the refinery, Mr Saidu Mohammed and some top officials of the corporation.

The NNPC boss said that the Kaduna Refinery, which currently produces at 60 per cent capacity, would soon hit full capacity production at the end of the rehabilitation exercise currently going on at the company.

“Kaduna Refinery is key to the sustenance of the nation’s economy, by the time it starts producing at full capacity,” he said.

The GMD explained that the target of the NNPC was to ensure that all the nation’s refineries would begin to refine petroleum products, with operation at full capacity.

He further assured Nigerians that efforts were in top gear to fix all the crude and petroleum products pipelines across the country, adding that the military would be engaged to provide land and aerial surveillance of the pipelines.

Dr. Kachikwu also told reporters that some of the cancelled oil swaps would be replaced with new deals.

On Tuesday, the NNPC boss sought the military’s support in the surveillance of pipelines to end crude oil theft that had led to loss of huge revenue in a period of dwindling crude oil price.

DPR Seals Eight Petrol Stations In Kaduna

petrolThe Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), Kaduna Zonal Office, has sealed eight Petrol stations in the state capital  and environs for selling petrol above the 87 Naira official pump price  and adjusting their sales machines to cheat customers.

The department’s Head of Engineering and Standards, Engineer Yahaya Maishera on Wednesday, said the petrol stations were caught  during a routine monitoring of service stations within the state capital.

Some of the sealed petrol stations are Tonsjos Service Station Kachia Road, Al-Mudeco Service station, Nnamdi Azikiwe Bye-pass, Mobil Service Station and Shema Petroluem among others.

The agency said they would remain closed, in addition to the owners paying  N100, 000 fine and signing an undertaking not to flout the rules of the agency.

According to Engineer Maishera, DPR has put measures in place to make sure that depot owners and marketers sell products at a rate that would enable the marketers sell at official pump price of 87 Naira per litre of petrol.

The agency also announced that 100 trucks of petrol had been lifted by different independent marketers from the Kaduna refinery for onward delivery to the states within the northern region.

It further assured residents of adequate monitoring of  the distribution of the products in order to ensure they are not diverted by marketers.

PENGASSAN Threatens Strike Over Lack Of Crude Oil, Unfair Treatment

Oil workersMembers of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN), Kaduna Refinery Branch, have given a 12-hour ultimatum to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and PENCOM to reverse the slashing of their contributory pension fund and also supply crude oil to the three refineries across the country to enable them continue production of refined petroleum products.

Chairman, PENGASSAN (Kaduna Refinery branch), Sanusi Abdulhamik, in a statement he issued on Monday, said that the Kaduna Refinery has been shut down for a while due to what he termed as lack of turn around maintenance and non availability of crude oil to enable the workers refine fuel, diesel and Kerosene.

He alleged that rather than supply crude oil to Kaduna, Port Harcourt and Warri refineries, the NNPC has resorted to importation of refined petroleum products into the country, a situation which he described as a deliberate plot by government to sell the three refineries to their cronies.

The workers threatened to embark on an indefinite strike if NNPC failed to supply the refineries with crude oil latest by Tuesday morning, and also service the plants for optimal performance.

While appealing to Nigerians not to see their action as being insensitive to their plight, Abdul-hamik explained that the decision to go on strike was inevitable since NNPC refused to turn around the refineries and supply crude oil to enable them perform their duties.

According to him, there is no justification for government to continue importing refined petroleum products when it can repair and maintain the existing refineries that can guarantee availability of the products across the country.

Ebola Virus: Kaduna Organises Ebola Training For Health Workers

Ebola VirusThe Kaduna State Government on Tuesday organised a training for its health workers across the 23 Local Government Areas of the state and also inaugurated a task force to educate the people about the Ebola Virus Disease and how to curb its spread in the state.

Although the outbreak of the virus was yet to be reported in the state and the northern part of the country since it broke out in Lagos, the State Government and residents decided not to leave anything to chance in order to avoid the disease entering into the state.

The Kaduna Refinery also held a sensitisation meeting for its staff and host communities about the virus.

The training, organised in collaboration with the Center for Disease Control (CDC), was a fallout of the emergency meeting between the 36 state governors and President Goodluck Jonathan on how to prevent further spread of the virus in the country.

Nigeria, along with Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia have been the hardest hit countries by the epidemic, which the World Health Organisation (WHO) has called the worst in four decades.

The outbreak of Ebola Virus in Nigeria has prompted a review of traditional practices of various government and private institutions, religious faiths, and communities.

The virus has also stimulated significant research in the academic community into finding possible cure and avoid further spread of the virus. It is expected that citizens would adhere to all the health tips and warnings by medical experts.

Nigeria Loses Over 300bn Naira To Bitumen Importation Annually – Marketers

bitmoulNigeria loses over 300 billion Naira annually to massive importation of bitumen into the country, the Association of Bitumen Marketers and Distribution of Nigeria (ABIMD) has said.

This amount, the union said, could be used for other meaningful projects if the government had stopped importation of the product and encouraged its local production available at the Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company (KRPC).

Bitumen is a bye-product of petroleum used for road construction and maintenance.

At a news conference in Kaduna on Tuesday, the National Vice Chairman of the association, Fred Nyabam, described the massive importation of bitumen into the country as a serious threat to the economic development of the nation.

He raised alarm over the activities of some few individuals whom he described as selfish individuals and economic saboteurs that had truncated all efforts made in the past to stop importation of bitumen into Nigeria and encourage local production.

“The brazen act of sabotage against the Nation is that over 60% of all the Bitumen imported into Nigeria comes from a refinery in IRAN, whose Bitumen production capacity is not bigger than that of Kaduna Refinery.

He, however, called for the intervention of the Federal Government to protect Nigerian bitumen products by reducing the cost of locally produced ones and stopping the importation in order to enhance local product.