Oil Mafia Tried To Sabotage Refinery Project, Says Dangote

Aliko Dangote, chairman of the Dangote Group, has accused those he refers to as the oil mafia of attempting to sabotage the refinery project.

Dangote, addressing at the Afreximbank annual meetings (AAN) and AfriCaribbean Trade and Investment Forum in Nassau, The Bahamas, on Wednesday, said the organization he described as stronger than the mafia in drug trafficking tried multiple times to prevent the project from being realized.

“Well, I knew that there would be a fight. But I didn’t know that the mafia in oil, they are stronger than the mafia in drugs,” he said.

When asked if the group is local or foreign, he said, “Both. There is a local one and a global one. It is all mixed up. They tried all sorts but you know, I’m a person that has been fighting all my life. So, I think it’s part of my life to fight.”

‘We’ll End Up Winning’

Despite the battles, Dangote believes victory is assured.

“I think we will end up winning because the population and the government will be on our side because what we are doing is right,” Dangote said during the event.

In January, the Dangote refinery started production in an event the company described as a “big day for Nigeria”.

“Dangote Petroleum Refinery has commenced production of diesel and aviation fuel,” the group said. “This is a big day for Nigeria. We are delighted to have reached this significant milestone.”

When fully operational, the Dangote refinery, with a capacity of 650,000 barrels per day, is intended to be a game changer in reducing Nigeria’s dependency on fuel imports.

It costs an estimated $19 billion and is located on 2,635 hectares (6,500 acres) of land in the Lekki Free Zone on the outskirts of Lagos.

Despite being one of Africa’s greatest oil producers and the continent’s largest economy, Nigeria relies almost entirely on imported petrol and diesel due to a lack of refining capability.

The refinery, which was originally expected to operate in 2021, was officially inaugurated by then-President Muhammadu Buhari last year.


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