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Niger Delta

JTF Distances Self From Community Invasion

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The Joint Task Force (JTF) in the Niger Delta, Operation Delta Safe, says allegations that it invaded Igbomotoru Community in Bayelsa State is baseless and an attempt to distract ongoing efforts to stamp out oil theft.
The Tide’s source reports that the joint military force conducted a site visit to the illegal refineries site on Thursday with newsmen, led by Lt. Col. Philimone Malgwi, the Commanding Officer 343 Artillery Regiment.
The trip showed the illegal refining sites operated by oil thieves, where the ongoing clampdown on criminal elements took place, are located about 1.3 to 5 km away from Igbomotoru community.
Addressing newsmen after the visit, the JTF Commander, Rear Adm. Aminu Hassan, said the mandate was to protect oil and gas infrastructure and deter militancy, sea robbery, crude oil theft and other form of criminality within the Niger Delta region.He dismissed claims that the JTF was occupying the area and maintained that the operation was in line with their rules of engagement.
He added that the military was in the area to flush out criminals and protect law-abiding residents from criminals.
“In the way we do our things, we believe in showing people that we have nothing to hide, that is why we conducted the press to the field and we showed them what and what is there, and what the criminals are doing.
“They have erected illegal refining camps the size of which had never been seen in Bayelsa before. We have been watching them before now, it is now they want to start operation and we must stop them.
“We are here to protect the people, the oil and gas facilities, we follow international best practices, as professionals,” he said.
He challenged the suspected masterminds of the illegality behind the false alarm, to come out to answer them if they believed they had no hands in the illegality going on in the Igbomotoru, and its environment.
The JTF Commander urged the people of Igbomotoru to work together with the JTF to protect the national assets which belonged to all Nigerians.
Hassan explained that the JTF did not engage in dehumanising practices and did not interfere in community affairs.
He said the JTF had no links with allegations of rights abuse against a surveillance contractor, Dalon Security Services engaged by Agip in the neighbourhood.
According to him, the terrain is a difficult one that the JTF is ready to take anyone ready to the illegal refining site which is the biggest in Bayelsa State, so far.
He called on young people to go into legitimate business, and shun illegalities which would not pay them well but cut their lives short.
In his remarks, the Commanding Officer said they deployed their men in the area because the oil thieves and illegal refineries opetators had been unleashing terror to law-abiding residents of the area.
He said investigations indicated that the illegal refining sites were all tied to one suspect who had been attacking people opposed to using the area for the illicit acts, adding that the JTF was already on his trail.

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Niger Delta

Shun Cultism, Naval College Urges Graduating Students

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The Commandant of the Nigerian Navy Secondary School, Akpabuyo, Cross River State, Commander Felicity Uchime, has charged graduating students of the school to shun cultism, examination malpractice and other vices.
Uchime, who gave the charge last Saturday during the graduation ceremony of 195 students of the 2021/2022 set, urged the students to see their graduation from the school as a ladder to climb to higher grounds.
She said the graduation signified the hard work, determination and resilience of the students.
“As you graduate today, I want to advise you all to stay away from cultism, examination malpractice and vices.
“The Nigerian Navy School has imbibed sound character and discipline in all of you, hence we expect you to be worthy ambassadors of this great school, “ she said.
She said the school was poised for academic excellence and quality education, adding that the school has imbibed sound character and discipline in the students.
“Your parents have dedicated financial resources to see you through school; you must not disappoint their trust in you,” she said.
I want to wish all of you the best in your future endeavours,” she said.
Speaking, Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Naval Command, Rear Adm. Ibrahim Dewu, congratulated the students for the successful completion of their secondary school education.
Dewu, who was represented by Capt. Dauda Isa, said that their graduation reflected the training and quality of education the students had received in the last six years.
“With the quality of teaching we have in this school, I have no doubt that you all have the requisite credentials to excel in your future endeavours.
“We are going to do our best to upgrade the facilities in this school with a view to meeting the expectations ofstudents and parents,” he said.
The Tide’s source reports that Master Divine Akpan was awarded the best performing student of the school in the just released released by the West African Examinations Council.
The school also presented other certificates and awards to deserving graduating students.

 

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Niger Delta

First Female Immigration Boss In A’Ibom Assumes Duty

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Mrs Francisca Dakat has assumed duty as the 21st Comptroller, Immigration Service (CIS) and the first female Comptroller in Akwa Ibom Command.
Dakat, whose last posting was Rivers Marine Command, is taking over from Comptroller George Didel, who has been redeployed to Migration Directorate, Service Headquarters, Abuja.
Speaking with The Tide’s source during the exchange of baton in Uyo last Friday, Dakat said she would build on the achievements of her predecessor.
“The outgoing Comptroller has done so well and I intend to consolidate on those achievements, and if God helps us, we will do more.
“We always want to be better than our teachers. So, whatever we can do to make the command better, we will do it,” Dakat said.
Dakat, who was appointed into the Service in 1990, charged personnel of the Command to remain committed to duty and be disciplined, to move the service forward.
In his farewell message, the outgoing CIS, Didel, urged the personnel to remain loyal and committed to the service.
“I want to tell my staff that they must continue to be loyal to the country. They must be hard working and must be disciplined, especially in the performance of their duties.
“As public servants, we must continue to serve the public. So, I will leave them with that message, to be patriotic and be committed to their duties,” Didel said.

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Niger Delta

IPMAN Threatens Depot Shutdown Over Police Harassment

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The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), South East Zone, has threatened to shut down depots in Calabar, Port Harcourt and Enugu over incessant police harassment of its leaders.
Cross River State Chairman, IPMAN, Mr Robert Obi, made the threat last Friday in Calabar while speaking with newsmen.
Obi said the association decided to close all the depots and stations after a series of meetings with some stakeholders over police harassment of its leaders.
He alleged that there were moves by the Police Legal Unit at the Force Headquarters in Abuja to arrest its executives across the zone and possibly install a factional leadership.
He said that any arrest of its leaders in the zone would create more crisis in the association in spite of various court pronouncements laying the matter to rest.
Obi said the Attorney-General of the Federation, in a letter which was copied to Mr Chinedu Okoronkwo and his faction, who lost out at the Supreme Court, had acknowledged Alhaji Sanusi Fari as the authentic National President of IPMAN.
Obi frowned at the alleged moves by the police authorities and some, he described as “disgruntled elements”, to either misinterpret the Supreme Court ruling or subvert the will of the people.
He said their aim was to impose their cronies on the association even when the facts of the matter were very clear.
“Despite the legal advice, the police are putting all arsenals to arrest the current executives of IPMAN in Nigeria, particularly in Calabar NNPC depot and hand the leadership of the association to the people of their choice.
“IPMAN warns that further step shouldn’t be taken by the police to interfere with the current leadership of the association. We will shut down the distribution channels of petroleum and allied products in Nigeria pending when the police do the right thing.
“IPMAN leadership has resolved to continue with their rights in the constitution and abide by the extant laws and subsisting judgments of the courts in its favour,” he said.
The Tide learnt that the zone has been embroiled in leadership crisis which led to various court cases.
The South East Zone of IPMAN, comprises Enugu, Aba, Rivers, Cross River and Benue State with more than 40 depots and 1,000 petrol stations with about 2,000 members.
The zone has been having a running battle with officers of the Nigeria Police over alleged attempt by the police to force a factional leadership on the association.
Meanwhile, Force Headquarters spokesman, Mr Olumuyiwa Adejobi, said he was not aware of the matter.
Earlier, the Cross River State Command of the Nigeria Police had said it was not in position to react to the allegation.

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