Jan 15,2024.Thank you for reading this post, don't forget to subscribe!
As investigation continued into the arrest of a vessel, MT Kali, for crude oil theft in Bayelsa State last Thursday, the captain of the ocean-going equipment, David Adeboye, has revealed that 119 tonnes of crude oil had been piped into the vessel before its arrest.
The captain and the engineer attached to the vessel, Promise Eze, were paraded before newsmen yesterday.
Selected journalists had visited Oporoza, Warri South West local government area of Delta State, where the vessel was anchored yesterday, on a fact-finding mission.
The police were scrutinising relevant documents in the vessel and profiling the crew during the visit.
The vessel was arrested by a combined team of personnel of a private surveillance security provider, Tantita Security Services Limited (TSSL), operated by a former militant commander in the Niger Delta, Chief Government Ekpemupolo, alias Tompolo, and men of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) at Pennington oil field belonging to Anglo-Dutch energy giant, Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC), in Bayelsa state.
Adeboye told newsmen that his boss, whom refused to name, lured the crew into the illicit deal on the pretense that they were heading for Bayelsa State to load Automative Gas Oil (AGO), popularly known as diesel.
He said, “When we set out from Lagos – the boat has been in Lagos for more than a year; they were doing some maintenance on it – so when we came out, we were instructed to test-run the engine for like 10 miles and, thereafter, if we were satisfied that it could go as far as Bayelsa State, then we should proceed to Bayelsa State to bring AGO (diesel) to Lagos.
“That was the instruction given to us. So when I got there (Pennington oil field), I dropped the anchor and spoke with the agent. So, at what point AGO now turned to crude oil, that was what I am still battling with up until now. Currently, we have 119 tonnes of crude inside the vessel.”
According to him, due to poor network in the areas, he could not contact his boss to tell him that the agent was loading crude oil instead of AGO in the vessel.
In his remarks, executive director of TSSL, Captain Warriedi Enisuoh, who conducted newsmen round the impounded vessel, said his company had been on the trail of the vessel over a long time.
Enisuoh disclosed that the vessel was notoriously involved in crude oil theft in the country for a long time, adding that the discovery led to the decision of his organisation to track it.
He lampooned those opposed to the inclusion of private security providers in oil pipelines surveillance.
In a veiled response to the outbursts by Bayelsa State Governor Senator Douye Diri, who canvassed that the Nigerian Navy be solely responsible for the security of the nation’s maritime oil and gas assets, Enisuoh described those opposed to the involvement of private security firms in pipelines surveillance as “oil bunkerers.”
Enisuoh, who commended the security agencies, especially NSCDC, for the synergy with his organisation to end the menace of crude oil theft, said, “We want to seize this opportunity to let Nigerians know that those campaigning against the private security companies participating in this fight are oil bunkerers.
“Take it from here that I said so. They can continue but we will not relent; we will not rest in our efforts towards fighting this.
“We will continue to be resilient and we will definitely assist the country in resolving this. We will assist also the Nigerian security forces, which are happy to participate in securing our assets, to do this job,” he said.(www.naija247news.com)