Abuja—A citizens-led anti-sabotage group under the aegis of The Natives has thrown their weight behind the decision of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) to partner with Government Ekpemupolo to curtail the menace of oil theft in the polity.
The Guardian newspaper reports that the group led by Mr. Smart Edwards assured that it will do everything possible to defend Nigerians from being shortchanged by some cartels in the oil sector, hence it will mobilize a monitoring body across the country against saboteurs.
It noted: “Our national interests are far above the high demands of a few, we must support the management of NNPCL and the regulatory bodies.
“It is also important to assist genuine marketers in their noble businesses, not the ones bent on racketeering, sabotage and frustration of Nigerians.
“There must be some good in the new management of NNPCL, enlightening and informing Nigerians of rising oil production, the recent increase of numbers of major marketers, the joint partnership between NNPCL/Tompolo’s security company, the tax credit for fixing of major roads, the deliberate act to slash prices for marketers are sacrifices reflecting a new order.
“So as citizens, we must encourage them and also rise against intentional sabotage.
“We have no other country, all players must make the sacrifices needed to end shortages on a short-term and long-term basis.”
The group commended the management of NNPCL led by Mele KyarI, for putting measures in place to ensure that Nigerians are the real beneficiaries of the new policies in the oil sector.
The Natives, which is a joint action of citizens comprised of students bodies, youth groups, local communities, NGOs, CSOs and other special interest groups, vowed to collaborate with security agencies to burst the ring of sabotage in the oil sector and also in all affairs that matter to ordinary citizens.
The group called on the federal government to put an end to all monopolies, diversions and arm-twisting of NNPCL for private profit.
While commending the management of the NNPCL, Edwards said: “We must appreciate the Mele Kyari-led NNPCL for embarking on this drive and assiduously taking up the task of rewriting the story of the oil sector.
“With an NNPCL renewed vigour, breaking of monopoly for efficiency and giving citizens room for participation, this new leadership must be encouraged.
“The transparency in the sector is for the public good, the production of oil, PMS, GAS etc, are for public consumption, hence good service delivery is also required for the right public perception of the NNPCL, which is their goal too.
“So we cannot leave them to continuously battle this cartel alone, they are being bashed left right and centre, when we know the perpetrators are living with us.
“We must raise this alarm and awareness amongst citizens. We must understand the facts, discover the missing links, know the factors hindering and fish out the persons or companies that are collaborators to end this reoccurrence.
“The Natives will enlighten Citizens and set up a monitoring corridor around the operators in this sector. There are youths in the country who are patriotic enough, experts in the industry, intelligent and also energetic as well, who are available with integrity to achieve this mission. As the struggle to liberate citizens from all forms of oppression needs all hands on deck.
“We will be citizens, Army, Police, Navy, and Airforce to jointly man and monitor the roads in collaboration with security agencies, NNPCL, demand the operators because these marketers or players are also Nigerians, thus we can be the change we want to see.”