Political Affairs

NOC accuses the Petroleum Facilities Guard of spreading COVID-19 at the Sharara oilfield

Libyan Cloud News Agency – Tripoli

The National Oil Corporation (NOC) has expressed its dissatisfaction with the continued militarization of its oilfields.

NOC said in a statement that the commander of the southern region, Al-Mabrouk Sahban, entered the Sharara oilfield, which belongs to Akakus Oil Operations Company, by force, on Saturday, August 29, accompanied by 20 members of the Petroleum Facilities Guard (PFG).

It stated that the forced entry was in complete disregard for the precautionary measures taken by the company to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

NOC confirmed that one of the foreign employees working in the field tested positive for the coronavirus on Sunday August 30, as a result of his contact with members of the PFG due to their permanent and uncontrolled presence in the field’s workshop for the maintenance and repair of their vehicles.

“PFG also entered and inhabited the employees’ places of residence and asked the field administration to provide 150 meals for their accompanying convoy. This is in light of austerity, the severe budget deficit and the lack of funds due to the forced closure of oil fields and ports,” read NOC statement.

NOC chairman Mustafa Sanallah said that the reoccurrence of such incidents threatens the workers’ lives and makes their work a nearly impossible task.

He concluded that the Akakus administration had decided to evacuate the field and stop all its operations, which will result in the suspension of fuel supplies to the Ubari power plant, in addition to the potential theft and looting of the field.

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