The Federal Government has been accused of not giving Nigerians the opportunity to lift oil despite indigenous ship owners having standard vessels to perform this function.
A former national hydrographer, Commodore Joseph Abulu made this comments in an interview with newsmen.
Abulu revealed that most of those involved in the lifting of the products presently do not have their own vessels but end up chattering vessels when needed.
He said it was wrong on government’s side to be acquiring vessels rather, the Federal Government should engage the services of Nigerians who own ships and have the capability and technical knowledge of lifting petroleum products for export.
According to him, “I was telling you of the present situation where the federal government is now acquiring tanker to lift products, there are people who have tankers to lift our petroleum products.
I have been in the vanguard of those fighting for Nigerians to be allowed to lift our crude oil going to the international market.
“Nigeria is the only oil country in the world that uses foreign vessel owners and foreign vessels to lift her petroleum products to the international market. Why should a Nigerian not own a super tanker, and at any rate I could remember in 1999/2000 during the Obansanjo administration, I was the member of the committee that was set up to look at how Nigeria can start lifting crude.”