Nigerian Navy gets commendation on fight against pipeline vandalism
*Anti- smuggling on waterways
(Report by Udeme Clement & Joel ThankGod):
The effort by Nigerian Navy in tackling nefarious activities of pipeline vandals in the country has not gone un-noticed by other agencies of government.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, has commended the Naval Officers for their resilience and strong collaboration with NNPC in curbing pipeline vandalism in the country.
NNPC gave this commendation in a press statement.
The Corporation pointed out important role played by Nigerian Navy in uncovering and destroying illegal structures used by vandals as illegal refineries to siphon petroleum products from the pipelines.
NNPC in its statement revealed that over 203 of such illegal structures had been demolished from January to April this year, following a working synergy with Nigerian Navy.
More so, aside from curtailing pipeline vandalisation in various parts of the country, the Nigerian Navy is working tirelessly to curb smuggling on waterways and creeks.
In doing this, the Navy also works in collaboration with Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, in anti-smuggling operations to curtail influx of prohibited items into the local markets.
In the first quarter of 2020 alone, there were several reports about seizures of contraband and arrests of smugglers made by Navy, but handed over to Customs for further investigation, especially at Marine Commands.
For instance, recently, the Navy arrested five suspected smugglers on the waterways in Cross River State with about 692 bags of foreign rice, as well as 181 drums of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), commonly known as petrol.
While handing over the suspects and seized items to Customs, the Navy Commanding Officer , Rear Admiral Vincent Okeke disclosed that the items worth more than N75.3million, adding that the seized items came from Cameroon and were destined for Oron community in Akwa Ibom State.