02 April 2014, Abuja – Senior Special Assistant to the President on Public Affairs, Dr. Doyin Okupe, yesterday disclosed the decision of the federal government to set up a special court to try pipeline vandals in the country.
Okupe, who disclosed this at the end of a one-day summit for all State Publicity Secretaries of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa State capital, said the establishment of the special court to facilitate quick prosecution of vandals and saboteurs would also be backed by a decision for troop deployment to areas prone to pipeline vandalism.
Okupe said though the repairs on the vandalised and blown gas pipelines had commenced throughout the country in order to restore regular supply to the existing power plants and raise the power generated up to the targeted 7,000 mega watts, the war against vandals and saboteurs would be executed in line with the ongoing security action against insurgency and terrorism in some parts of the nation.
According to him: “These people have resolved to continue to play a dangerous political game. They know that all things being equal, President Jonathan will deliver on the promise of regular power supply, and once he does that, the people will vote him into office for second term. Those who are unrelenting at querying the capability of the president to deliver have resolved to sabotage the effort and destroy the Nigerian dream.”
“When I spoke with the Managing Director of the Niger Delta Power Holding Company, James Olotu and was told that inaugurating or not, the power plants are not operational due to lack of gas supply. The $16billion project lies in waste due to lack of gas supply.
“They want to kill the Nigerian dream and this is why the president has not been able to deliver on his promise. If the saboteurs had allow the transformation plan to be operational, we would have hit the target of generating over 300 per cent of what was generated in the past. In all these, they are not only aiming at the President but trying to kill the dream of regular power supply to the people.”
He noted that the preliminary investigation conducted by the federal government had shown that the saboteurs, suspected to be members of opposition political parties and groups, are ready to lay their lives down to frustrate the transformation agenda of President Goodluck Jonathan in the power sector.
Okupe however, announced that the security action planned against vandals and saboteurs may last between six and eight weeks.
“This period will be the lowest for the nation in terms of power generation. When the battle is started and the repairs completed, more power projects will become operational and power supply will improve.”
On the proposed conversion of Liquefied Natural Gas for domestic use and power generation, Okupe, said the management of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) had commenced arrangement for the domestication of the LNG with the proposed building of conversion plants close to the existing NIPP plants.