• Tuesday, July 16, 2024
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BusinessDay

Troops seize over N500m in oil theft crackdown

Oil theft: Again, army arrests 21 suspects, destroys 10 boats

Nigerian troops have seized over N500 million worth of stolen crude oil, in a major operation targeting oil theft in the country.

According to a statement signed by Edward Buba, Director of Defence Media Operations, obtained by BusinessDay Newspapers, the military prevented oil theft amounting to an estimated N501,089,400 in the South-South region.

This crackdown, part of ongoing efforts to combat various forms of insecurity, led to the arrest of 41 individuals involved in the illicit trade.

In the Niger Delta area, troops discovered and destroyed 20 dugout pits, 32 boats, and 32 storage tanks used for illegal oil refining.

Additional recovered items include 58 cooking ovens, 17 vehicles, one pumping machine, five mobile phones, and 49 illegal refining sites.

In total, 1,007,115 liters of stolen crude oil and 141,664 liters of illegally refined AGO were recovered.

The military’s broader efforts to combat terrorism and insecurity nationwide has also yielded significant results.

During the past week, troops neutralized 177 insurgents, arrested 263 individuals involved in criminal activities and 158 kidnapped hostages were rescued.

Buba highlighted that the military’s operations also led to the recovery of a substantial cache of weapons and ammunition.

“The seized items included 6 PKT guns, 63 AK-47 rifles, 3 FN rifles, 1 SMG rifle, 29 locally fabricated guns, 37 dane guns, 20 pump-action guns, and various other firearms.

“Troops confiscated 2,100 rounds of 7.62mm special ammunition, 1,239 rounds of 7.62mm NATO ammunition, 419 rounds of 7.62 x 54mm, 212 rounds of 5.56 x 54mm ammunition, 722 live cartridges, 74 AK-47 magazines, and several other military-grade items”, he stated.

Buba emphasized the military’s commitment to taking the fight to terrorists and criminals, making significant progress each day.

While acknowledging the successes achieved so far, he underscored the ongoing dedication to improving security and safeguarding the lives and property of citizens.