The Buhari administration’s modular refineries scheme would stop illegal refining of crude oil in the Niger Delta.
The Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Mr. Nsima Ekere, said this on Saturday.
Ekere, who spoke to THISDAY in Owerri, where he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate Degree award from the Federal University of Technology, Owerri, stated that modular refinery is one of the key projects under the Federal Government’s New Vision for the Niger Delta.
The NDDDC boss said, “The idea was to try and carry the interests of the respective local communities in the project. You see the idea of modular refinery; first of all, we want to stop illegal refining because of the attendant security and environmental issues that they bring. But if you stop it, don’t forget those people doing those illegal refining do not have the technical and financial capacity to get involved in the modular refining. That is where NDDC steps in so that the interest of the local community can be carried along.”
“We have come up with all kinds of things like setting up cooperatives so that they will be part and parcel of what is going on. That is ongoing. One refinery that is to benefit from this collaboration almost immediately would be a modular refinery that was being fabricated by some private people, AMCON bought it over and so we are now talking in fact, NNPC, AMCON, NDDC and the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB). The four of us are collaborating, trying to get that refinery in Akwa Ibom State up and running as soon as possible. So yes, it is ongoing; it is work in progress.”
The NDDC boss further said that that his message to the stakeholders has always been that it is better to think of sustainable economic model that can empower the people.