Eleven days after the inauguration of Exercise OKUN ALAFIA II, the Nigerian Navy says it has recorded laudable success by arresting some vessels involved in illegal bunkering and other criminal acts.
The 30-day exercise was started on July 24.
Rear Admiral Danjuma Moses, the Fleet Commander of Western Fleet, who represented Rear Admiral Oladele Daji, the Flag Officer Commanding, Western Naval Command, said this on Monday.
He said a vessel named MOTHER COMFORT was arrested by NNS OSE on July 24.
Moses added that NNS OSE also arrested another vessel called SEA SUPPLY for illegal bunkering and expired naval permit.
The Fleet Commander said the successes were based on the collaboration between the Navy and the Maritime Domain Awareness facilities, which made vectore, intercept and interrogation easier.
He also said that four suspects were arrested along with 8×50 litres jerry cans filled with PMS in addition to several other empty jerry cans.
He said: “These are other accessories used for siphoning PMS at various locations along the Atlas Cove-Ijegun NNPC pipeline.
“These arrests were made between July 27 and August 3 at Idi-Mango in Abule Glass Akaraba area.”
Moses said the Nigerian Navy would not relent in its efforts until it had provided the necessary and conducive environment for law abiding members of the public to carry out their legitimate maritime-related business.
He said: “Based on operation posture of Western Naval Command underlined by foregoing successes against perpetrators of criminalities within the nation’s maritime environment, I hereby restate that the Nigerian Navy will not rest to its oars until it has provided necessary conducive environment for law abiding members of the public to carry out their legitimate maritime business.
“May I further request that as partners in progress, members of the public are free to divulge credible information to the units in your localities to enable it to get rid of all forms of criminalities.”
Moses said eight ships, two helicopters and a detachment of NN Special Boat Service participated in the exercise.
He listed them as: NNS PROSPERITY, NNS EKUN, NNS NGURU, NNS EKULU, NNS OSUN, NNS OSE, TUG RIMA and TUG CDR UGWU.
NAN reports that the Command had earlier engaged in a series of exercises and operations such as: OPERATION JUNCTION RAIN, EXERCISE SWIFT RESPONSE, EXERCISE ATEGUN ALAFIA, EXERCISE OKUN ALAFIA I, TREASURE GUARD II.