Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company Limited (KRPC) records an average loses of N2.2 billion annually due to illegal tapping of its raw water pipeline, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has disclosed. The water drawn from Kaduna River is used to generate power for the running of the Kaduna refinery, a subsidiary of the NNPC, as well as serves as coolants for its equipment and for combating fire outbreaks.
A statement released by the NNPC quoted the KRPC Managing Director, Malam Idi Mukhtar, as lamenting that the consumption of raw water from the tapped pipes by residents, who encroach on KRPC premises, was an unnecessary additional burden to the refinery’s industrial requirements, which must be resolved urgently by relevant state government agencies. “We require a particular amount of water sufficient enough to generate steam and other industrial consumption needs, but because of the incidents of illegal tapping of our water pipeline, we need to put more effort to meet our industrial requirements as well as satisfy the appetite of illegal tappers.”
According to the KRPC boss, the refinery now spends more on diesel and other material inputs in the maintenance of its generators and other equipment due to the water tapping challenge. The illegal raw water pipeline tapping, he stressed, also “slows down the build-up rate of water in the reserve tanks which endangers the refinery”.
Malam Mukhtar further disclosed that the illegal acts are committed mostly in Janruwa, Kamazo, Namaigero and Mahuta areas of Kaduna metropolis, which are the communities along the raw water intake pipeline Right of Way.
He expressed joy that the Kaduna State Government had promised to look into the issue with a view to finding a lasting solution to the challenge. Mr. Mukhtar equally advised illegal tappers of the refinery’s raw water pipeline to desist from the act, warning that “the raw water was not fit for human consumption because it was untreated”.
KRPC’s Executive Director Operations, Alhaji Shehu Malami, who also spoke on the menace of illegal raw water tappers of KRPC pipelines, expressed the fear that if the challenge was not attended to urgently, a time would come when the plant would not be able to run some of its critical units.
According to Malami, the Kaduna refinery was currently operating at 65 percent capacity, producing 1.7 million litres of petrol, 1.7 million litres of diesel and 700, 000 litres of kerosene, daily. “The daily rate of loading is massive, even on Sundays products are being loaded to meet the growing demands in the Country,” Malami stated, stressing that addressing the challenge of illegal water tapping will go a long way in ensuring sustainability of the current productivity increase.
By Olisemeka Obeche