Navy Cracks Down: 14 Alleged Oil Thieves Apprehended in Akwa Ibom Sting Operation

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Capt. Uche Aneke, the Commanding Officer of the Nigerian Navy’s Forward Operating Base (FOB) in Ibaka, Mbo Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom state, briefed journalists on the base’s anti-crime operations in the first quarter of 2024.

He stated that 14 suspects were apprehended during this period for various crimes including smuggling, oil theft, cultism, economic sabotage, and sea robbery within the joint operations area (JOA).

Aneke emphasized the navy’s zero-tolerance stance on maritime crimes and economic sabotage in Nigeria’s waterways.

He noted that the suspects have been handed over to other relevant security agencies for further investigation and prosecution.

Aneke emphasized that the arrests and seizures made during the period were not merely isolated incidents but were achieved through strategic operational planning and effective execution. He assured that the general security situation in the area of operations has remained relatively peaceful.

Furthermore, Aneke highlighted the base’s collaborative efforts with security stakeholders in the joint operations area, which have significantly contributed to reducing criminal activities over the years.

He noted that Operation Delta Sanity, of which FOB Ibaka is a part, has been strengthened by the determination of FOB Ibaka and other participating bases.

Additionally, Aneke revealed that the base has employed 35 civilian staff who receive regular pay and are provided with three meals daily to support intelligence operations. This initiative demonstrates the base’s commitment to maintaining a positive relationship with the host communities.

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He expressed gratitude to the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla, for his unwavering provision of resources and moral support essential for ensuring safer waterways by the Nigerian Navy.

FOB Ibaka’s jurisdiction encompasses the eastern flanks of Nigeria, spanning from the sea approaches of Calabar to the new international maritime boundaries between Nigeria and the Republic of Cameroon.

This area also includes land territories covering Mbo, Udung Uko, and Oron Local Government Areas of Akwa Ibom state.

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