In a bid to curb illegal oil bunkery in the country, the Nigerian Navy Service (NNS) has destroyed three Wooden boats used in syphoning Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), also known as petrol, from vandals in Badagry
The Service also destroyed 6000 PMS empty jerry cans used in stealing the products and smuggling to neighbouring countries.
The Flag Officer Commanding (FOC) Western Naval Command (WNC) Operation, Rear Admiral Mustapha Hassan, disclosed this to newsmen during the destruction in Iyafin Community, Badagry.
The FOC, who described the community as a notorious place for smuggling, said the guard had made massive catch in the area.
”Today is seventh day of ‘Operation Water Guard’ and by the second day of the operation, we have made a massive catch. I promised to bring you to the warehouse of the perpetrators.
“We are here in Iyafin, a community in Badagry and a notorious place for smuggling. You can see right behind me that we have thousands of jerrycans.
“Our mission here, is to stop the smuggling and we believe destruction of these jerrycans is one of the way to stop this crime.
“We are here to stop smuggling act by these perpetrators and this is our landward and inland incursion towards stopping the crime.
“We are going to do more by extending our reach beyond Badagry because we know it happens all the way towards Ogun State and all.
“I’m running on government resources and I have the energy. We are making all efforts to cut short the activities of these criminals. I will keep working until they get tired.
“After this community here, we will still focus more on Ashipa Community in Seme”, he said.
Hassan, who doubles as the Commander, South West Joint Task Force Operation, AWATSE, said he would work with his land forces to reduce smuggling of petroleum products.
He warned those involved in smuggling activities to desist and find legitimate work to do.
“I think they have had a free ride for a long time. So, now that they have seen our seriousness of deploying helicopters, camera and air sets, with time, we will defeat them as long as I don’t stop.
“This is a continuous operation. I have the mandate of the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral E.I. Ogalla, to carry out the operation”, he stated.
The Flag Officer warned community leaders in Iyafin to stop hoarding jerrycans in their houses, saying some vehicles loaded with jerrycans were impounded by the naval personnel on their way back from the destruction.
Operation Water Guard was flagged off on November 9 by Nigerian Navy, to make the Nigerian waters and borders unattainable for maritime criminals and smugglers alike.
He was accompanied by Commander, NNS BEECROFT, Commodore Kolawole Oguntuga, and Navy Capt. Adams- Aliu, the Commanding Officer, Forward Operating Base, Badagry.
NPA Warns Against Illegal Containers Stripping On Port Access Roads
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.
BMTA Urges FG To Fix Moribund Refineries
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”.
Customs Partners Copyright Commission To End Piracy
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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