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Navy arrests 35 vandals, impounds 408 drums of oil

By Inemesit Akpan-Nsoh, Uyo
02 December 2021   |   4:00 am
Nigerian Navy, Forward Operating Base (FOB), Ibaka, in Mbo local government council, has arrested 35 suspected vandals of petroleum pipelines and impounded 408 drums of suspected illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil (AGO) in Akwa Ibom.

Nigerian Navy, Forward Operating Base (FOB), Ibaka, in Mbo local government council, has arrested 35 suspected vandals of petroleum pipelines and impounded 408 drums of suspected illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil (AGO) in Akwa Ibom.

This was disclosed to journalists by the Commanding Officer, FOB, Navy Capt. Mohammed Abu, while handing over the suspects and exhibits to the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) in Ibaka Mbo local government council.

He said Nigeria Navy Ship Thunder, on November 26, while on routine patrol intercepted the suspects and impounded three wooden boats used in conveying the AGO.

“I will be handing over the suspects and exhibits of wooden boats that were intercepted by the NNS Thunder on the November 26, at high sea having infracted economic policy of the country.

“The Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Auwul Gambo, has given a clear directive to Nigerian Navy to free the waterways of illegalities and other maritime crimes.

“I am handing them over to you as the prosecuting agency to carry out further investigation and prosecute them accordingly and revert to the Nigerian Navy on the outcome,” he said.

The commanding officer said the arrest of the suspected vandals has sent messages to others that the Nigerian Navy would not relent in ensuring all economic sabotage in the Nigeria maritime environment would not be tolerated.

“This arrest is to send a message to those vandals of our crude oil pipelines that the CNS has zero tolerance for crude oil theft and our ships are out there looking for them and we will arrest them until they are out of our maritime domain,” he added.

He warned smugglers and vandals of petroleum products to stay out of the business, as the base would not relent in its patrol to rid criminal elements out of Nigeria’s waterways.

The commanding officer debunked recent media publications that sea robbers had grounded economic activities in Ibaka.

Receiving the suspects on behalf of NSCDC, the Head of anti-vandals unit, Adamu Jafaaru, said the agency would carry out thorough investigation on the suspects and all those culpable would be arraigned in court soon.