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FG has plans to curb oil theft, says Sylva

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Former Executive Governor of Nigeria’s Bayelsa State, and Current Chairman, Oil & Gas Free Zones Authority, Timipre Sylva, attends an Opec-JMMC meeting in the UAE capital Abu Dhabi on September 12, 2019. (Photo by KARIM SAHIB / AFP)


Against the backdrop of the recent report that Nigeria lost at least $1.35 billion to oil theft in the first half of 2019, the Minister of State for Petroleum, Chief Timipre Sylva, has declared the readiness of the Federal Government to reverse the trend.

Sylva, who addressed a press conference recently in Lagos at the end of a two-day strategic retreat with Directors and Chief Executives of the ministry, said the ministry has a very clear programme to curb oil theft, saying there was no reason the country should be losing production.

“We have a very clear programme. There is no reason the country should be losing production. It is not just oil theft; we are talking about product theft as well. We are trying to fine-tune the modalities. We will come out with the full details of the programme later,” he noted.

The Minister also unveiled his plans for the ministry, with a pledge to increase oil and gas production, and also revamp the country’s ailing refineries. 
   
His words: “Mr President made it clear at the Ministerial Retreat that oil and gas remains critical to the Nigerian economy of today and the future. It remains key to the successful implementation of our budget at all levels of government.“In inaugurating his cabinet, Mr President transmitted his priorities in the ‘Next Level’ Agenda and his focus on performance against these priorities.”

On resumption as Honourable Minister of State, we initiated this early session with key leaders of the ministry and heads of agencies to cascade the presidential agenda, receive status reports from the ministry and its agencies to develop strategic priorities, a roadmap and a delivery framework for the next four years and beyond. 
 
“Therefore, the retreat concluded with the production of high-level strategic priorities that focus on increase in oil and gas reserves and production, energy security through curtailment of smuggling and revamping the refineries, increase in Federation Revenue through cost control and increased efficiencies, and facilitate investment in capital projects, thereby enhancing job creation opportunities and poverty eradication.”
   
The minister said the priorities have clear deliverables to be achieved over short, medium and long terms.“A performance management framework has also been developed along with a programme of monitoring output and evaluating outcomes to feed into the Ministry’s scorecard supporting the ‘Next Level’ agenda,” he added.


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Timipre Sylva
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