PIPE LINES VANDALISM: IMPLICATION ON THE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN NIGERIA

CHAPTER ONE

1.0 INTRODUCTION

        The Nigerian petroleum industry has been confronted by two sapping challenges over the years. The challenges relates to the prevalence of militancy and oil pipeline vandalism in the Niger Delta.

While the former has significantly attenuated in the aftermath of the Amnesty deal in 2009 (Okoli, 2013), the latter appears to have escalated both in incidence and impact. According to Ogbeni:

A total of 16,083 pipeline breaks were recorded within the last 10 years adding that while 398 pipeline breaks representing 2.4 percent were due to ruptures, the activities of unpatriotic vandals accounted for 15, 685 breaks which translated to about 97.5 percent of the total number of cases (Ogbeni, 2012, para 8).

Indeed, the incidence of oil pipeline vandalism has been on the rise in Nigeria. According to the 2013 annual report of the Nigerian Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (NEITI), Nigeria lost a total of 10.9 billion US Dollars to oil theft between 2009 and 2011 (NEITI, 2013; Onoja, 2013). This loss adumbrates the significance of vandalism as a veritable problem in the Nigerian oil industry. The implication of oil pipeline vandalism vis-a-vis Nigeria’s security has been vividly demonstrated by its nexus with economic, environmental, and humanitarian losses and consequences (Onuoha, 2009). In effect, oil pipeline vandalism has been associated with consequences which hold negative implications for national issue of oil pipeline vandalism, in spite of its topical relevance, has not received adequate emphasis in the existing literature. Again, the bulk of the extant works in the area of inquiry has tended to be merely journalistic, bereft of analytical rigours and systematization. This has necessitated a systematic investigation into the problematique. This paper, therefore, an attempt is made to establish the relationship between oil pipeline vandalism and national security in Nigeria. The paper posits that oil pipeline vandalism results in untoward outcomes which threaten Nigeria’s national security.

The discovery of crude oil in commercial quantity in Oloibiri in 1956 marked the birth of the petroleum industry in Niger. Since then, the Nigeria economy has been more or less dependent on petroleum. To facilitate the distribution of crude oil product from the oil rich Nigeria Delta to other parts of the country, a network of oil pipelines was constructed to inter-link some states at strategic locations (Onuorah, 2007).

Nigeria has a total pipeline grid of 5001 kilometers. This consists of 4315 kilometers of multiproduct pipelines and 666 kilometers of crude oil pipelines. These pipelines transverse the country, forming a network that inter-connects the 22 petroleum storage depots, the four refineries at Port-Harcourt (I and II), Kaduna and Warri, the off-shore terminals at Bonny and, Escravos, and the jelties at Alas Cove,

Calabar, Okirika and Warri (Onuoha, 2007, p.6). This system of oil pipelines are used to transport crude oil to the refineries in Port-Harcourt (I and II), Warri and Kaduna, covering a total distance of 719 kilometres. The multi-product pipelines are used to transport products from the refineries/import receiving jetties to the 22 petroleum storage depots at various places in the country. The storage infrastructure consisting of 22 loading depots linked by pipeline of various diameters has aggregate installed capacities of 1,266890 (PMS), 676 400 (DPK), 1007 900 (AGO), and 74 000 (ATK) m3tonnes (Special Committee on the Review of Petroleum Product s Supply Distribution- SCRPPSD, 2000, p.10).

 

1.1   BACKGROUND OF THE RESEARCH

        The Nigerian oil Pipeline infrastructure has been subjected to incessant attacks by vandals over the years. The frequency of such attacks has been rather disturbing in the recent times. For instance, in 1999 alone, there were a total of 477 recorded cases of pipeline vandalization in Nigeria (see Tables 2 below).

The incessant occurrence of oil pipeline vandalism in Nigeria has raised the question as to whether the pipeline networks were laid in such a manner that forecloses easy vandalization. This is in addition to the question as to whether the pipelines are policed and protected at all. Indeed, some safety valves were considered while laying the pipelines. For instance, the government acquired 3.5 metres wide right of way (ROW) on each side of the pipelines; also the pipes were buried a miter deep to avoid accidental contacts, or vandalization. Despite these safety valves, recent experience in Nigeria has shown that the integrity and safety of these pipelines have been incessantly compromised because of the activities of vandals and saboteurs. The vandals fracture the oil pipelines with the criminal intent of obtaining and appropriating petroleum products for commercial purposes or personal use. The table below (Table 2) highlights the incidence of oil pipeline vandalization in Nigeria in 1990s.

Year Number of Incidents Remarks

1995 7 cases Reported cases only

1996 33 cases Reported cases only

1997 34 cases Reported cases only

1998 57 cases Reported cases only

1999 497 cases Reported cases only

If the figures on table 2 are anything to go by, the implication is that the incidence of pipeline vandalization has been on geometrical increase. This trend has got even worse since 2000. Available statistics show that Port Harcourt, which recorded about 600 pipeline breaks in 2003, had about 1,650 breaks from June to September, 2006. Similarly Warri axis moved from only 100 pipeline breaks to 600 during the same period (Amanze–Nwachukwu and Ogbu, 2007, p.14).

Cases of pipeline breaks have also been recorded in the northern parts of Nigeria, particularly in Kaduna and Gombe State (Onuoha, 2007).

In effect available records clearly indicate that incidence of oil pipeline vandalism has been on the spiral increase in Nigeria. The vandals appear to have acquired more criminal discipline, sophistication and efficiency in perpetrating oil pipeline vandalism with apparent ease and impunity. So, the incidence has been escalating. A media report by Ogbeni (2012, para 5) succinctly situates the rising incidence of oil pipeline vandalism in Nigeria in recent times thus:

Between 2010 and 2012, total of 2,787 lines breaks were reported on pipelines belonging to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), resulting in a loss of 157.81mt of petroleum products worth about ₦12.53bilion. Pipeline along the Gombe axis recorded 850 cases and Kaduna system recorded 571 cases of pipeline vandalism. The pipeline along Warri axis recorded 548 cases vandalism while Mosimi system pipelines in Lagos recorded 463 cases and Port Harcourt recorded lesser cases of vandalism while mosimi system pipelines in Lagos recorded 463 cases and porthacort recorded lesser cases with 336 point vandalized.

 

1.2   STATEMENT OF RESEARCH PROBLEM

        The level at which the Nigerian pipe line are been vandalized and oils are made away in large quantity, the loose security strength of the country and the attitude of the country leaders toward this issue. The story of vandalized pipe lines in Nigeria is becoming concurrent, property are vandalized by the leaders and no one says nor do anything about it. Is has been the main issues in the research work, pipe line vandalization.

Overall, oil pipeline vandalism constitutes a veritable threat to Nigeria’s national security. As it has been observed in the preceding sections of this writing, the impact and implications of pipeline vandalism have been critically detrimental to the concerns of public safety and development in Nigeria. To say the least, therefore, the prevalence of oil pipeline vandalism in Nigeria over the years has presented the country with crucial national security challenge.

 

1.3   OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY

        Due to the concurrent issues of vandalization in the country, which the leaders of this country does nothing about it, the researcher seek to bring to the notice of the country, the citizen of this great country the implication of this incidence to the economic development of our nation.

Also, the objectives of the researcher in this study is that at the end of this research work it will help and bring an end to this issues, as it will educate the masses the importance of securing their property because this assess are part of the nation’s own which every one of this nation is part of.

 

1.4   SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

        The outcome of this research work will be of beneficial help to the nation as it will highlight the effect of vandalizing the country property, in this case the vandalization of pipe line, to the economic development of this country, a highlight of its set back to the country.

 

1.5   SCOPE OF THE STUDY

        This research work covers the country Nigeria, o the vandalization of pipe line and its effects and implication to the country economic development.This work basically focus on pipe line vandalization.

 

 

 

1.6   RESEARCH QUESTION 

The researcher formed some research question that will guide her to carry out this work so as to have a focal point in the study. Which the question are:

  1. What are the reason to oil pipeline vandalism in the country?
  2. The implication of pipe line vandalization is drastic to the country economy, what are the possible measure to take so as to keep secure and guide of this pipe line?

 

1.7   LIMITATION OF THE STUDY

        During the course of performing/researching this project work, the researcher encountered a lot of challenges as well as opposition which ranges from financial constraints, time factor. This factors in their own ways, slowed down the speedy progress of this work that resulted to the researcher not being able to finish the research work on time as is required

Also,  within the area of study the researcher was faced with some other forms of constrains that contributed to the limitation of this researcher work, like accessibility to data, information and facts concerning the present study due to some reasons or the other, some not willing to give out information that it is to be within the workers.

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