Acting Director, Defence Media Operations, Major General Bernard Onyeuko has said troops of Operations Delta Safe working in conjunction with other Security Agencies have recovered a total of 12,846,300 litres of illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil in the Niger Delta Region.
General Onyeuko who noted that, the Armed Forces of Nigeria have recorded “remarkable results” in their efforts against economic sabotage and other sundry crimes in the South-South Zone disclosed this at a media Briefing, on Thursday, at the Defence Headquarters, Abuja.
According to him, troops have also dscovered and immobilized a cumulative total of 145 illegal refining sites between 20th May, 2021 to 6th January, 2022.
While giving the overview of military operations across the country, General Onyeuko explained that, troops have also Immobilized 209 ovens, 122 cooking pots and boilers, 161 cooling systems, 224 reservoirs, 160 large dugout pits and 367 storage tanks in the Niger Delta Region.”
Consequently, he noted that a total of 12,846,300 litres of illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil as well as 29,237 barrels and 6,491,000 litres of stolen crude oil were recovered within the period.
“A total of 3,969,000 litres of Dual Purpose Kerosene 10,200,500 litres of illegally refined Premium Motor Spirit were recovered by troops of Operation Delta Safe.”
Troops were also said to have recovered 33 assorted arms; 5,268 rounds of different calibres of ammunition and 21 AK-47 rifle magazines, while 3,110 bags of 50kg foreign parboiled smuggled rice, 662 pieces of galvanized pipes, 32 tanker trucks and 119 wooden boats used for illegal oil bunkering activities were impounded and handled appropriately in the course of the operations.
Meanwhile, a total of 41 kidnapped victims were rescued, while 77 criminal elements associated with pipeline vandalism, piracy, illegal oil bunkering and armed robbery were arrested within the period.
All the arrested criminals and recovered items, the Director said have been handed over to relevant security agencies for further action.
In the same vain, troops of Operation Awatse in the fight against pipeline vandals and economic saboteurs in the South-West Zone successfully forestalled criminal activities within the period under review.
According to General Onyeuko, troops have impounded a total of 1,458,600 litres of illegally refined Premium Motor Spirit; 9,345 barrels of stolen crude oil and 355,000 litres illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil.
“Additionally, troops recovered a total of 1,594 rounds of ammunition and 14 assorted rifles. Also, within the period, a total of 15 illegal refining sites were immobilized, while 12 boats and 13 trucks engaged in illegal activities were arrested. In the same vein, within the period 15 kidnapped civilians were rescued, while 28 criminal elements were arrested.
“In summary, the Armed Forces of Nigeria from 20 May 2021 to 6 January 2022 neutralized 1,910 criminal elements including terrorists, armed bandits and robbers as well as kidnappers across the Country.
“This is in addition to scores of other terrorists and armed bandits killed during air strikes within the period.”
He added that, troops have also rescued a total of 729 kidnapped victims across the Country.
“Within the period in focus, troops made a cumulative total recoveries of 13,201,300 litres of illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil and 3,969,000 litres of Dual Purpose Kerosene.
“Also, 38,582 barrels and 6,491,000 litres of stolen crude oil as well as 11,659,500 litres of illegally refined Premium Motor Spirit were recovered and handed appropriately.
“Additionally, a total of 912 criminal elements were arrested, while large cache of arms and ammunition as well as livestock among other items of economic and security concerns were recovered by the troops during the period.”
Onyeuko further stated that their operational performance for the year 2021 showed that the Armed Forces of Nigeria is commitment to ensuring that peace is restored in the Country.
“It shows the synergy between the Nigerian military and other Security Agencies is succeeding in tackling the security challenges facing the Country. We will continue to sustain the offensive and will not relent until peace is restored to every troubled zone in Nigeria.
“The general public is also assured of our commitment to protect lives and properties as well as our economic assets anywhere, with renewed vigour this year.
“The High Command of the Nigerian Military continues to thank the general public and members of the press for their support and further solicit everyone’s cooperation towards providing credible and timely information that will facilitate proactive engagements in our operations.
“The Military High Command also commends all the gallant troops of the Armed Forces and personnel of other security agencies involved in various operations across the Country for their resilience, doggedness and commitment. Troops are further encouraged to remain resolute and decisive in securing the Country.”