The Nigerian Navy seized 803,353 barrels of crude oil worth N105 billion within the outgoing year, the Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ikechukwu Ogalla revealed over the weekend.
Ogalla said the Navy arrested 27 vessels, destroyed 703 illegal refining sites, and arrested 232 suspects in crude oil theft.
He stated this in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital while taking stock of its activities in the last 12 months at a meeting with principal staff officers, flag officers commanding and base commanders of the defence.
The Nigerian Navy Chief said the personnel of the command also arrested five barges, 690 cotonou boats laden with stolen crude, 116 speed boats and 82 vehicles/trucks.
MT Marine Express, MT Cecilia, MT Ufuoma, MT Vigor I, MV Barge Ayeba Eneni, FT Lamu I and MT Vinnalaris I Lagos, are some of the vessels arrested Ogalla said were seized.
He said “Arising from these, 46, 369,219 litres of diesel, 2,472,200 litres of kerosene and 438, 886 litres of petrol were recovered. Similarly, the NN recovered 803, 353.20 barrels of crude oil. At current market values, the seizures translate to about N105 billion.
“The NN has been active in the fight against illicit drug trafficking especially within the maritime domain. Between April and November 2023, the NN arrested 692 bags of Cannabis Sativa, worth about N1 billion,” he said.
He explained that the arrests were part of the achievements recorded as a result of deliberate strategic policy formulation, operational implementation and tactical execution.
Ogalla cautioned personnel of the defence not to be lulled into complacency to mar their effort of eliminating criminals.
Therefore, he said “The criminals we combat are adaptable and ruthless. They will change their tactics, seek new routes and employ new technologies. We must stay ahead of the curve, anticipate their moves, and counter them.
He charged to utilise all available resources to anticipate criminal activity and disrupt their operations before they can even begin.
Ogalla also declared that the Nigerian Navy under his watch retained zero tolerance for oil thieves and vowed to deal with any officer or rating found colluding with criminal elements, applauding President Bola Tinubu for providing the resources and moral support needed by the Nigerian Navy.