Nigerian Navy cooperating with neighbouring countries on maritime crimes – Ibas

The Chief of Naval Staff (CNS) Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas has said the Navy is boosting cooperation with navies of neighbouring country to check the menace of piracy and maritime crimes.

The CNS who was represented by the Chief of Policy and Plans (COPP) Rear Admiral Jacob Ajani made this known Thursday in Abuja at a press conference to flag off the Nigerian Navy Diamond Jubilee celebration.

He said, “As it is done in the north east, even in the maritime frontiers we are cooperating with our neighbours, because as you are aware, security is the concern of everybody more so at sea which does not have well defined boundaries as on land.”

He added that many cooperation initiatives which exist between Nigeria and Navies of Gulf of Guinea recently resulted in the release of a hijacked vessel.

Ajani explained that the bombing of pipe lines, some of which is onshore, requires a wholistic approach which the Nigerian Navy is cooperating with sister Services and security agencies towards addressing the problem.

He argued that since the navy mounted operation Tsare Teku, piracy at sea has declined, noting that the navy is reinvigorating its activities in that area.

He said, “I’m sure in no time the story we would hear from that aspect will be more of good news.”

He said from January 2016 till date, the Navy in collaboration with the Joint Task Force Operation Pulo Shield and other security agencies destroyed 118 illegal refineries and 16 barges respectively.

Ajani said seven wooden Cotonou boats were arrested and 80 were destroyed. Also 51 speed boats and 368 suspects were arrested in the same period.

Navy personnel also impounded 42 outboard engines, 1025 drums and 2,339 jerry cans, 12 tankers, 27 vehicles, 347 Geepee tanks, 63 pumping machines, 13 generators and 56 surface tanks were confiscated, he said.

Ajani listed other successes to include the recovery of 36 small arms, 120 storage tanks, 17 vessels, 12 welding machines and 16 hoses.

He stated that the Navy on 16th April launched a major operation, Operation Tsare Teku in response to the emerging security challenges in Nigerian waters.

He said four Navy Ships are currently deployed for this operation which has succeeded in stemming attacks in Nigerian waters.

The ships are NNS Andoni, NNS Okpabana, NNS Kyanwa and NNS Sagbama, Ajani stated.

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