By Sumaila Ogbaje
Abuja, Oct. 15, 2020 The Defence Headquarters says the troops of Operation Delta Safe have impounded large quantity of stolen petroleum products and destroyed many illegal refining sites in the South-South zone in the last one week.
The Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. John Enenche, stated this while giving the weekly update on the activities of the military across theatres of operation on Thursday in Abuja.
Eneche said the troops had continued to carry out aggressive fight against economic sabotage in the zone with significant successes between Oct. 8 and Oct. 14.
He disclosed that the Nigerian Navy Ship Delta patrol team intercepted and destroyed two large wooden boats laden with about 20,000 litres of illegally refined AGO at Jeddo in Delta State during the week.
He added that the team also destroyed four drums and 75 polythene bags containing illegally refined AGO by the riverbank at Jeddo.
Enenche said that further exploitation of the general area led to the destruction of 600 drums and recovery of two pumping machines hidden in several wooden stores.
He added that two suspected vandals were arrested around Shagbolor in Warri South Local Government Area during the operation, adding that the suspects and recovered items were taken into custody for further action.
According to Enenche, troops also destroyed three illegal refining sites and one wooden boat loaded with illegally refined AGO around Bekinkiri/Ke in Degema Local Government Area of Rivers State.
He said the troops had on Oct. 8 arrested four suspected pipeline vandals at Opukushi Community in Ekeremor Local Government Area of Bayelsa acting on credible intelligence.
The coordinator added that troops also arrested two suspected pipeline vandals from Ughelli on Oct. 9 in connection with the theft of some parts of the Oil Mining License (OML) 34 oil wellheads.
He also disclosed that troops of Operation Calm Waters 2 and Swift Response arrested two suspects with 978 bags of 50 kg foreign parboiled rice around Utan Iyata Creek on Oct. 9.
According to him, preliminary investigation revealed that the foreign parboiled rice was suspected to be smuggled from the Republic of Cameroun.
“Also, a truck laden with about 2,195 cartons of Cocoa Butter and a motorcycle were arrested. Suspects and items recovered from the arrest are currently in custody and will soon be handed over to the appropriate prosecuting authority.
“Gleaning from the foregoing, the Armed Forces of Nigeria and other security agencies remain committed, resolute and determined to curtail the activities of insurgents, armed bandits, economic saboteurs and other criminal elements in the country.
“The Military High Command commends the gallant troops for the successes achieved so far and their unwavering commitment and dexterity.
“Troops are further encouraged to remain resolute and decisive in curtailing the activities of the enemies of the country,’’ he said.