Maritime Security: Nigerian Navy neutralises 291 illegal refineries, arrests 38 vessels

The Nigerian Navy has neutralised 291 illegal refineries and arrested a total of 38 vessels along with the Eastern Naval Command, ENC, in the last two years.

The outgoing Flag Officer Commanding, ENC, of the Nigerian Navy, Rear Admiral David Adeniran, made the disclosure recently at the Nigerian Navy NN Victory Ship, Calabar, while enumerating the achievements of the Command under his watch in the last three years of his career, where he superintended over the affairs of the Command between 2018 and December 2020.

Adeniran also stated that the Command seized 31,310 50 kilogrammes of smuggled rice during its several operations within the maritime area of the Navy’s responsibility at the ENC.

Speaking at the pull-out parade organised by the Navy in his honour, to mark the end of his career in the Navy after a meritorious service with an unblemished record, the outgoing FOC commended the Navy for availing him the opportunity, which ordinarily he wouldn’t have had, throughout his 35 years of sojourn in the Navy.

Adeniran, a certified electrical electronics engineer, enumerated other achievements of the ENC under his watch to include “seizure of 199,000 metric tonnes of stolen crude oil from oil thieves and 51,850 tonnes of illegally refined AGO confiscated by the command from oil thieves, who had constituted a big burden to Nigeria’s economy.”

He added that “hardwork on the part of the officers and ratings of the Command culminated in the arrest of 707 suspects, 38 vessels, 5 vehicles and seizure of 196 pumping machines and dismantling of 225 wooden boats used by sea economic saboteurs to steal oil along the creeks.”

Reeling out other achievements of the ENC, Adeniran said, “The major pirate syndicate, who specialises in ransom negotiations, was smashed, a development which had obstructed and invariably check activities of piracy and sea robbers for several months now in the ENC area of responsibility.”

He maintained that the command’s relentless patrol along the maritime space led to the clearance of operations on the camp of sea robbers, and deprived the robbers of launching sight in their nefarious activities.

He stated that the command’s multi-agency operations, such as Swift Response, Delta Safe and Operation “Bekanmong,” made the waterways a bit peaceful for Nigerians making use of the waterways, without any fear or favour.

He enumerated other exercises successfully carried out by ENC under his watch to include: Andy Oforifori, Yangamash and Sangasong, between the period when he served the Navy as flag officer of the ENC between December 2018 and 2020.

“The command was able to carry out its operations in the maritime space with cognisance of COVID-19 protocols. It is time to retire and give way for another thing,” he added.

He stressed that all that was achieved throughout the period he served in the command as FOC couldn’t have been possible without the support of the ratings, officers and the civilian community within the Navy area of responsibility.

“In the area of operations, from December 1, 2018, to December 1, 2020, the command had been able to achieve 18,156 hours, 30 minutes of sea patrol by capital ships, making about 90 per cent presence at sea. Also, the boats patrol the creek and shallow waters for 127,632 hours 20 minutes,” he disclosed.

Adeniran further maintained that the ENC was the only Command which surpassed the 100 per cent mark.

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