The Nigerian Navy stated that the troops of Operation Delta Sanity have intercepted 4,036.7 barrels of crude oil and 270,600 litres of illegally refined AGO, valued at N1.05 billion, from oil thieves in one week.
The Director of Naval Information, Rear Adm. Adedotun Ayo-Vaughan, disclosed this in a statement on Tuesday in Abuja while giving updates on the operations conducted by the navy between Jan. 29 and Feb. 4.
Ayo-Vaughan explained that the operations also led to the deactivation of 40 wooden boats, 55 illegal refining ovens, 49 reservoirs, 27 dugout pits, and 19 illegal refining sites.
He said the various troops deployed for the operation have continued to conduct aggressive patrols to combat oil theft within Nigeria’s maritime environment.
The navy spokesman noted that the Navy Ship PATHFINDER, in collaboration with three Naval Security Stations, on Jan. 29 conducted reconnaissance operations around Elem Krakrama Creek and Ke in Degema Local Government Area of Rivers.
He said the team intercepted six wooden boats laden with about 600 litres of suspected stolen AGO and 566 barrels of suspected stolen crude oil.
Ayo-Vaughan stressed that the Forward Operating Base Formoso, on the same day, conducted operations around Brass River, Akassa, and Obama in Ogbia Local Government Area of Bayelsa, as well as Nembe and Southern Ijaw.
“During the operations, the team discovered four illegal refining sites, five ovens, and two pumping machines.
“They also arrested five wooden boats laden with about 704.4 barrels (112,000 litres) of products suspected to be stolen crude oil and the sites and items were dismantled while the products were handled appropriately.
“Also, on Jan. 29, FOB Escravos in Delta conducted anti-crude oil theft operations around Saghara Creek in Warri South Local Government Area.
“During the operation, the team visited a previously deactivated illegal refining site that was observed to be under reconstruction and had one empty reservoir and five dug-out pits,” he said.
The navy spokespsrson pointed out that the NNS SOROH in Bayelsa, in conjunction with Naval Station 030 and Ocean Marine Solution Houseboat Peremebiri, also conducted operations around Ogbotobo and Fish Camp Community in the Atala area of Bayelsa between January 29 and February 2.
He said the team discovered a vandalised flowline station belonging to Shell Petroleum Development Company that was recently reactivated.
Ayo-Vaughan said the team also found a newly constructed illegal refining site with two pumping machines, three generators, galvanised pipes, a 50 kg gas cylinder, and other construction items.
He stated further that the team also found one wooden boat laden with sacks of about 19,000 litres of products suspected to be stolen AGO, adding that the boat was safely deactivated.
He said on Jan. 30, Naval Base Oguta in Imo conducted an operation and discovered one fibre boat laden with about 7.5 barrels (1,200 litres) of product suspected to be stolen crude oil.
“Furthermore, from Jan. 30 to Feb. 2, Naval Flying Unit, Port Harcourt, conducted aerial surveillance at Abonnema, Temakiri, Aiya Abissa, Ke, Krakrama Tuma, Samkiri, Ukwa West, Ikwuriator, Imo River, and Aba River.
“During surveillance, the team sighted various illegal refining sites and wooden boats laden with an unspecified quantity of illegally refined AGO in numerous numbers suspected to have been syphoned from a nearby wellhead.
“Accordingly, the incident was reported to relevant units for appropriate action,” he added.