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NNPC Ltd. Chief advocates Special Court for Crude Oil Theft, Pipeline Vandalism

... wants accelerated hearings of such cases in courts

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“Together, we can ensure that the benefits of our natural resources are maximized for the economic and social development of our country”

For the nation’s oil and gas industry to achieve its full potential as an enabler of national economic and industrial growth, the Group Chief Executive Officer of the NNPC Limited, Mr. Mele Kyari, has called for the support of the judiciary in tackling the twin challenges of crude oil theft and pipeline vandalism.

To this end, Kyari called on the judiciary to consider creating a special court to try offences related to these crimes and granting accelerated hearings in such cases.

Kyari made the call at the National Judges Capacity Building Workshop on the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) 2021, organised by the National Judicial Institute (NJI) and INVESTIN 234, on Thursday in Abuja.

In a goodwill message at the workshop, the GCEO stated that crude oil theft and pipeline vandalism have severely undermined the PIA’s gains.

According to a statement by the Chief Corporate Communications Officer of NNPC Ltd., Mr. Olufemi Soneye, Kyari said the role of the judiciary is critical to the success of the efforts of the various security arrangements put in place by NNPCL, the law enforcement agencies, and other stakeholders in the industry.

“In particular, is the recommendation that a special court be created to try those offences as they hinge on our survival as a country and/or for such trials to be conducted under an accelerated hearing process by the issuance of Practice Directions to that effect, with concomitant sanctions to deter would-be offenders” Kyari stated.

The GCEO also called on the judiciary to accelerate hearings in criminal cases in their courts through timely determination of the criminal charges and imposing adequate punishments and sanctions on culprits to serve as deterrence to others.

He said NNPC remains committed to collaborating with all relevant stakeholders to ensure the successful implementation of the PIA, adding that “together, we can ensure that the benefits of our natural resources are maximized for the economic and social development of our country.”

The GCEO also commended the Chief Justice of the Federation, Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, and the organizers of the workshop for extending an invitation to him and the opportunity to deliver a goodwill message at the workshop.

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