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Navy Warns Militants, Smugglers Against Oil Theft

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The new Commander of the Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS) Victory in Calabar, Cross River State, Commodore Vincent Okeke, has warned that militants, smugglers and oil bunkerers, would not be tolerated within his area of operation.
Okeke gave the warning when he addressed reporters at the NNS Victory jetty, yesterday, after handing over 724 bags of foreign rice worth about N13 million and eight suspects to the Nigeria Customs Service.
He said the suspects and items were arrested in two large wooden boats; popularly known as Cotonou Boat, along the Calabar Channel by his men on patrol.
The commander said they were heading for Akwa Ibom State from neighbouring Cameroon.
“We are handing them over as expected of us to the Customs for further investigations and prosecution. The message is clear.
“For this to happen shortly after my resumption means they want to test my will. I can promise them I am equal to the task.
“Militants, smugglers, bunkerers, they should all stay away. I will not tolerate any such thing in my area of operation.
“Our work here is to make our waters safe. We have maintained 24 hours patrol along the Calabar Channel. I assure all well-meaning Nigerians and seafarers that the water is safe for them,” he said.
Responding, the Assistant Comptroller of Customs in charge of Eastern Marine Command Calabar, Gabriel Johnson, expressed delight at the relationship between the Navy and the Customs.
“We are very elated about the relationship with the Navy. These waterways are not safe for any smuggler. We would work hand in hand with the Navy to make sure they would not have their way,” he said.
He said there would be further investigation after which the suspects would be prosecuted and the bags of rice confiscated by the Federal Government.

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NPA Warns Against Illegal Containers Stripping On Port Access Roads

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The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has warned against the illegal stripping of containers by drivers and terminal operators along the port access road.
Managing Director, NPA, Mohammed Bello Koko, issued the warning during a visit to Tin-Can Island Port where he inspected designated container stripping yards around the port.
He warned that truckers caught in the act stand the risk of being delisted from the electronic call-up system platform managed by the Trucks Transit Parks (TTP).
Bello Koko said container stripping on the port access road violates operational guidelines and will no longer be condoned.
He also announced that NPA has rolled out standard operating procedures for barge operators.

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Maritime

BMTA Urges FG To Fix Moribund Refineries

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Following the incessant hikes on petroleum pump price in the country, Bonny Maritime Transport Association (BMTA) has urged the Federal Government of Nigeria to fix all the moribund refineries to production capacity
The Association said the repairs of the refineries would reduce the high cost of petrol pump price and alleviate poverty in the land.
Safety officer, BMTA, Comrade Kings Dume, stated this to TheTide during an interview in Port Harcourt.
Dume, who decried the hardship ordinary Nigerians were facing, said boat users hardly travel by water due to high cost of transport fare.
He said a boat journey from Port Harcourt to Bonny Island now cost between N6000 and N6500 per passenger, making it difficulty for travelers to board boats to and from their home town.
According to him, if the pump price keeps skyrocketing, there is every tendency that boat fare may be increased from N6000 to N8000 per passenger this Christmas season
He further noted that the inability of the Federal Government to repair the refineries has brought untold hardships, hunger and suffering to homes.
“Cost of living has skyrocketed everywhere and everyday, the poor can no longer go to market, parents can no longer pay bills and most children have dropped from schools due to poverty and hardships”, he stated.
He lamented that most boat operators were no longer in business due to high cost of procuring spare parts, engine oil and patrol to power their boats.
Comrade Dume appealed to the President Bola Ahmed Tinubu-led government to see reasons and fix all the moribund refineries for use to end hardship and poverty ravaging the land.
He noted that the repair of the refineries by this administration “would bring succour and confidence to an average Nigerian”.

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Customs Partners Copyright Commission To End Piracy

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In a bid to end all forms of piracy and other social vices, the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has expressed readiness to collaborate with the Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC) to end piracy of intellectual and creative property in Nigeria.
Customs said their collaboration would create opportunities for the two parties to establish a significant legacy that will end the menace of piracy in the country.
Comptroller General, Customs, Bashir Adewale Adeniyi, disclosed this while receiving members of the Commission at the Customs Corporate Headquarters in Abuja.
He explained that the NCS had concluded plans to collaborate with relevant stakeholders, enhancing its programmes in all aspects through creative activities and training of its staff.
On the need to organize training for the Service’s officers in combating piracy, Adeniyi said, “the programme will introduce officers and men of the Service to new values and expertise that would enhance their capacity and morale to fight piracy”.
The Comptroller General, who noted the importance of the collaboration, said protecting creative and intellectual property significantly contributes to the country’s economic growth.
Earlier, leader of the delegation and Director General, NCC, Dr. John Asein, expressed his appreciation to the NCS for the importance of addressing piracy of intellectual and creative property.
“The idea behind paying this courtesy visit to you, Comptroller General Bashir Adewale Adeniyi, was to congratulate you on your appointment and to extend our hands for collaboration to end piracy”, he stated.
The DG further explained that “apart from strengthening the creative skills of officers and men in various sectors, the commission would achieve its mandate by working with the NCS”.

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