A University lecturer, Prof. Okey Onuchukwu, says establishing modular refineries in the Niger Delta will enliven the economy of the area and end youth restiveness.
Onuchukwu, an Econometrist who teaches at the University of Port Harcourt, made the suggestion in an interview with journalists in Port Harcourt on Tuesday.
The Acting President Yemi Osinbajo recently in a meeting with Niger Delta leaders in Port Harcourt announced that the Federal Government planned to establish modular refineries.
A modular refinery is a processing plant that has been constructed entirely on skid mounted structures. Each structure contains a portion of the entire process plant, and through interstitial piping, the components link together to form an easily manageable process.
The don also said the establishment of modular refineries would make the youth in the Niger Delta more meaningfully occupied, productive and enterprising.
“The meaning is that we shall have modular refineries along the creeks, with such development; the youth will become more productive.
“The economy will become more vibrant, more money will legitimately be put in their pockets, this to me is a good omen,’’ he said.
Onuchukwu further said that the crises plaguing the Niger Delta would be reduced if the move to establish modular refineries was implemented.
He further said that when implemented, modular refineries would close the gap in the petrol consumption need of the country.
“Apart from that, it will also make more products available for sales outside the shores of the country,” Onuchukwu said.
He said that the move was to meaningfully engage youths involved in illegal oil refining in the region.
Illegal refinery operation nicknamed ‘Kpo Fire’, is a major activity in the region, with products such as diesel and kerosene being produced for household consumption.
Scientists say the black soot being witnessed in some parts of the region is as a result of the activities of illegal refiners.