The Senate Committee on Petroleum Downstream sector of the nation’s oil industry has criticised the deplorable state of the Kaduna refinery.
He said members of the committee would discuss with the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Allison-Madueke and the Group Managing Director of the nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Austen Oniwon, to find out why one of the plants in the refinery has stopped importing crude.
Senator Magnus IAe, disclosed that the Kaduna refinery was currently operating below 30 per cent of its installed capacity with most of the plants not functioning and shutdown.
Senator Abe, who led other members of the committee on a courtesy visit to Kaduna State governor shortly after its oversight function visit to the refinery, wondered why a country like Nigeria would keep importing fuel due to the bad state of the refineries.
He said: “If Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company operates at full capacity, it can refine 110 thousand barrels of crude daily and you can get Kerosene, Diesel, PMS, Bitumen and others here. When we talk about the deregulation of the downstream sector, these are the kind of values we talk about, these are the kind of thing we can get here in Nigeria, the kind of money we can generate here for this country, if we run things properly in a market-driven economy.
Managing Director of the refinery, Bolanle Ayodele, explained that the refinery began deteriorating as a result of inadequate maintenance and irregular crude supply owing to pipeline vandalism.
He said the management is ready to tackle this problem as plans are underway for a comprehensive rehabilitation of the refinery.
Senator Abe said the lawmakers would engage with the minister of petroleum and the group managing director of NNPC to look for immediate solutions to some of the problems confronting the Kaduna refinery.