Oil theft: Naval chief extends ‘Operation Delta Sanity’ by 90 days

The Chief of Naval Staff (CNS), Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla, has extended the duration of a special operation to combat crude oil theft in the Niger Delta region, dubbed ‘Operation Delta Sanity’ for another 90 days.
Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla.

Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla.

Fubara charges navy to be firm

The Chief of Naval Staff (CNS), Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla, has extended the duration of a special operation to combat crude oil theft in the Niger Delta region, dubbed ‘Operation Delta Sanity’ for another 90 days.
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The special operation, which was launched on January 6, 2024, to not only combat crude oil theft and other criminalities, particularly, in the region, was to ramp up Nigeria’s oil production and improve the economy.

The naval chief, who was on a one-day visit to the base of the Nigerian Navy Ship Pathfinder, yesterday, said that Operation Delta Sanity was conceptualised as a major anti-crude oil theft operation that has a deployment of Nigerian Navy personnel, platforms, helicopters, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), amongst others, in aggressive surveillance and interdiction operations across the Niger Delta area.

While admitting that the operation has been a success, Ogalla noted that it has denied oil thieves and vandals, in parts of the Niger Delta, freedom of action in the maritime environment.

According to him, from Bayelsa to Ondo, Rivers to Akwa Ibom and beyond, the operation had been with the recovery of massive quantities of stolen crude oil products, dismantling illegal refining sites, arrests of suspects and seizure of stolen products, saying it underscored the resolve of the Nigerian Navy to stamp out crude oil theft.

He said:  “Commands, units and bases were directed to conduct both kinetic and non-kinetic operations to stem the tide of maritime criminalities. The initial duration of the operations was 90 days.”
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The CNS also noted that since the inception of the operation, the exercise has recovered a very large amount of stolen crude oil and illegally refined petroleum products. He said that the operation, cumulatively, recorded successes, which include seized 95 wooden boats, deactivated 119 storage tanks used for illegal refining and deactivated several dugout pits.

MEANWHILE, the Governor of Rivers State, Siminalayi Fubara, has charged the Nigerian Navy to be firm in the fight against all forms of economic sabotage, particularly crude oil theft, in the nation’s waterways.

Fubara spoke when the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ikechukwu Ogalla, with his delegation of top officers of Navy High Command, paid him a courtesy visit at the Government House, Port Harcourt, yesterday. 

The governor stated that Nigeria is facing a myriad of crises, including economic challenges, rising insecurity and criminal activities that threaten the national economy, which should not be overlooked.

In his address, Ogalla reiterated that the Nigerian Navy and Rivers State are like conjoined twins who cannot do without each other.  According to him, this is because they needed collaboration on various aspects of their activities ranging from training, operations, and logistics, adding that Rivers State is key to their performance. 
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