Nigeria - President Jonathan Laments Over Increase In Oil Theft

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan on Monday described the situation where it is only Nigeria that crude oil is stolen as extremely embarrassing and unacceptable. 
Jonathan expressed the regret at the presidential maritime security retreat held at the Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa, Abuja. 
The retreat was convened by the president to assess progress, review challenges and chart a realistic way forward for the attainment of set goals in the maritime sector. 
Jonathan said government would strengthen the relevant regulatory agencies and deepen inter-agencies partnership in addressing the challenge of oil theft, piracy, and coastal insecurity. 
``It is extremely embarrassing that it’s only in Nigeria that crude oil is stolen. 
``It’s a very bad news and I believe that Nigerians and foreigners, who are indulged in that act, need to put their heads under the pillow; because all over the world it’s only in Nigeria that crude oil is stolen. 
``We are not the only oil producing country. Why is it that it’s only in Nigeria that people steal crude oil?  That must stop. 
``Our charge to all relevant agencies and departments of government is to work cooperatively with the required urgency this challenge deserves. 
``I request participants to this workshop to come up with deliverables that provide details on roles and responsibilities of stakeholders and timelines for harnessing the huge potentials in the maritime sector so that our losses will, in the shortest possible time, be converted to our net gains,’’ the News Agency quoted the president as saying at the forum.
He noted that the maritime sector was critical to the attainment of national economic development and for effecting national transformation agenda. 
He said the sector facilitated approximately 90 per cent of world trade; created millions of jobs and generated billions of dollars in economic output. 
Jonathan stated that the maritime industry had helped to enhance Nigeria’s position as a regional leader in several areas because it is a major engine of national growth. 
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