The Commanding Officer of Nigerian Navy, Forward Operating Base, FOB, Ibaka in Akwa Ibom State, Commodore Abdu Odumu, on Monday, December 22, 2014 disclosed during a press brief that they have arraigned 12 suspected oil thieves in Mbo Local Government Area of the state.
Odumu revealed that the suspects were arrested with 200 drums, each containing 250 litres each of Premium Motor Spirit (petrol) and other items including smugglers boat, four pumping machines and 20 drums of illicit gin.According to Punch reports, He stated that the suspects were arrested due to regular surveillance by officers and men of the command.
He said, “We were able to arrest these suspects as a result of our regular patrol.”
He further observed that oil theft had drastically reduced the revenue of the country adding that the arrest of the suspects would serve as a deterrent to others.
He said, “If Nigeria continues to lose this on daily basis, it is going to have a negative impact on the revenue of the country.”
Also, Odumu reinstated the resolve of the Nigerian Navy to ensure zero tolerance for oil theft and other illegalities committed at sea within the country’s territorial waters.
The suspects were thereafter handed over to the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps for further investigations and punishment.
In appreciation to the Naval officials for their efforts in fighting crimes, the state Commandant of NSCDC, Mr. Pedro Ideba, said, “This is one of the numerous arrests which have been made by the Nigerian Navy and handed over to us. It is only in Nigeria that we hear much of oil theft and illegal bunkering activities.’’