Men of the Anti Crude Oil Theft patrol team of the Nigeria Navy Forward Operating Base (FOB) in Igbokoda, Ondo, on Sunday, said no fewer than 15,775 liters of crude oil from illegal refineries being operated by suspected illegal bunkerers in the state have been destroyed.
Speaking on the destruction exercise, the Commanding Officer, Captain Wasuku Alushi, who made this known while speaking with newsmen said the illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil from illegal bunkerers and oil thieves worth about N13.5m
Alushi who was represented by the Executive Officer of the Base, Commander Humphrey Nnaji, said the liters of crude oil were destroyed in accordance with the Joint Task Force Operation Delta Safe mandate on COT.
Alushi who reiterated the commitment of the Base to stamp out the menace of COT and other crimes in Igbokoda and its environ, said the Base will intensify her intelligence gathering, surveillance, robust and aggressive maritime, as well as static deployment of personnel at strategic locations to stamp out crimes in the area code
According to him, men of the Anti Crude Oil Theft patrol team swing into action after a credible intel report against the illegal bunkerers, saying they were tracked and intercepted in a wooden boat popularly referred to as Cotonou boat laden with crude oil.
He said “The wooden boat was intercepted about 12NM off the coast of adjoining Ojumole and Obe community in Ilaje Local government area of Ondo state. On sighting the Naval personnel, the crew abandoned the boat and fled.
“FOB Igbokoda is operationally responsible to the Flag Officer Commanding Western Naval Command under the leadership of Rear Admiral MB Hassan.
“So far, within six weeks of the CO's assumption of command, the Base has made great strides in the arrest and destruction of illegally refined products all in accordance with OPDS directive/mandate.
“On 13 October 23, 2023, a wooden boat laden with about 2000 litres of suspected illegally refined crude products was intercepted and destroyed at Awoye”
In another operation, based on credible intelligence, the Base discovered an illegal storage site with approximately 5000 litres of illegal POL products at Ugbo-Nla, which was destroyed in accordance with OPDS directives.
” In furtherance of the Base operations against COT, on 27 October, the Base stormed an IRS at Obe- Akinboye in Obenla community which was observed to be under reactivation for illegal refining of illegally refined AGO which was also destroyed in accordance with the mandate.
“On 30 October, the Base also discovered a storage facility for illegal refined products at old market road Igbokoda with 11 x 25 litres containers of illegally refined products totalling 275 litres.
“Most recently, On 14 November, an illegal storage site at Mahin was discovered with 96 drums of 30 litres jerrican and 3 x 300 litres drums of illegally refined POL products approximately 3500 litres concealed in a storage facility.
“All discovered and destroyed illegal products totalling approximately 15,775 litres and valued at around N13.25m at current pump price”
He assured that the Base will continue to carry out its operations in line with the strategic directives of the Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice Admiral EI Ogalla.
“The CO under his watch is determined to take innovative steps in dealing with criminal activities”
He, however, assured the good people of Igbokoda and its environ that the Base is already poised to stem the vicious cycle of criminality and provide a stable and peaceful environment,
He urged the citizens to go about their legitimate businesses without fear or intimidation.