LEARNING from other oil producing countries where the discovery of that all-precious commodity has turned out to be more of a curse than blessing, Ghana is not taking chances to protect its oil fields from economic vampires.
Currently, naval personnel are engaged in a training programme dubbed, ‘Operation Jubilee’ which is aimed at providing security at the Jubilee Field.
The Ghana Navy plans to establish special operational bases near Half-Assini and Elmina, to provide swift response to any security situation at the oil fields.
Real Admiral Matthew Quarshie, Chief of Naval Staff who announced this at the 2020 Administrative Inspection parade, mounted by the Western Naval Command at Sekondi last Friday, said the safety and security of the country’s oil lies with the navy.
“We cannot fail in the discharge of our duties as the oil production starts this month,” he stated.
Now that a firm date has been announced for the first oil from the Jubilee Field to pour out, the need for adequate security of the oil field has become paramount.
Already, a test production from the Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) Nkrumah vessel, has been carried out and all is set for the official take-off, barring any hitch.
The nation is expected to produce 120,000 barrels of oil per day, from the first quarter of next year.
Parliament is also vigorously considering the Oil Revenue Management Bill which would be passed in no time.
The Times is indeed delighted about the security arrangements so far, to safeguard the oil field and to protect it from crooks who may adopt various ways to exploit the oil wealth.
We recall that the President and his Vice recently issued a stern warning to people with evil intentions to keep off the oil industry, or else they would be dealt with, when arrested.
It is a fact that since the discovery of the oil in the country, there has been a massive influx of people, some probably with ill motives, and if the activities of these vampires are not checked, the country would be in danger of losing the proceeds from its oil resources.
Meanwhile, the Times wishes to suggest that while the nation thinks about providing adequate security to the oil field, it should also not lose sight of the combustible nature of the product.
We advise that there should be conscious efforts to train people in fire-fighting techniques and provided with the latest equipment to deal swiftly with fires, when they occur in the course of drilling the oil.