By DAPO OLAWUNI
Frontline shipowner and Chairman of Integrated Oil and Gas Limited, Capt Emmanuel Ihenacho, has said that lack of resources caused the temporary suspension of the 20,000 barrels per day Eko Petrochem refinery.
Ihenacho made this known when the President of Maritime Reporters Association of Nigeria (MARAN) Mr Godfrey Bivbere, and Secretary General of MARAN, Babajide Okeowo, paid him a courtesy visit.
The Former Minister of Interior was honored by MARAN at it’s 2022 34th Anniversary and Awards as the most diversified operator.
Ihenacho said that his company will always cherish the “Most Diversified Maritime Award” given to it by the Maritime Reporters Association of Nigeria (MARAN).
He said: “It is a good reflection of what it is that we are doing and have done and where we are. We are probably the most diversified operators.
“We started off as a shipping company, we diversified into oil trading, we became depot owners and operators, and we move down further into the downstream sector into the ownership and servicing of filling stations.
“At some point in time also, we articulated the plan to move into the midstream when we set plans in motion to build a twenty thousand barrel per day modular refinery, the plan is still in the offing because we have finished everything we needed to do with that plan.
“The availability of resources has held us back, we didn’t have the funding when we needed it, so, the plan is only suspended for the time being and it will be resuscitated at a later date.
“So, we have been ranging over the industrial horizon, doing all sorts of things, creating value for people, creating jobs, and sustaining our economy,” he said.
Also, Godfrey ceased the opportunity to present the MARAN award plaque to the former minister, while commending his foresight as he transited from core shipping to other areas of operation which also falls under the maritime industry.
He expressed the hope that operators like him would be encouraged by the relevant bodies to further develop the industry.