The Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, has called on the leaders and people of Okrika community in Rivers State to see oil facilities in their domain, especially the Okrika Jetty and the pipelines that lead to it, as their own and protect it from nefarious activities of vandals.
The Minister who made this appeal during the commissioning of the Okrika Jetty B stated that the economic benefits of the jetty to the Okrika community and the entire nation are immense as it guarantees the evacuation of 50% of the products from the Port Harcourt Refinery.
She said the Jetty, which is very strategic as regards evacuation of products from Port Harcourt Refinery Company (PHRC), was completely reconstructed by an indigenous Nigerian company, Lee Engineering, in furtherance of the Federal Government’s Nigerian Content Initiative.
The Minister informed that the Jetty can take up to 35, 000 tonnes ship weight of products and exports products such as Automated Gas Oil (AGO), Fuel Oil, Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) and even Dual Purpose Kerosene (DPK) from the Port Harcourt Refinery.
She said the President Jonathan administration is embarking on an aggressive refineries rehabilitation project to reduce products importation and that without complementary facilities like the Okrika jetty it would not the possible for the refineries to produce at optimal capacity as they would have evacuation challenges.
The Minister said she was particularly excited about the Okrika jetty project because it reinforces the administration's belief in the local content adding that the entire rehabilitation and upgrade of the jetty was handled by a local company.
The Jetty which was originally built to load products from the Port Harcourt Refinery has been reconfigured to receive imported products and pump same to the South- Eastern zone depots in Aba and Enugu up to Minna and Gombe Depots through the System 2E and 2EX Pipeline network.
The commissioning ceremony was attended by the NNPC GMD, Engr Andy Yakubu, members of the NNPC Top Management as well as other top government functionaries.
It would be recalled that in 2006, a fire caused by pipeline vandals who were scooping fuel from a vandalized point on one of the pipelines gutted the pipeline up to the jetty completely destroying the control systems and several loading arms.