We will destroy vessels caught stealing crude oil – Nigerian Army warns
The Nigerian Army has vowed to destroy an arrested vessel, Harbor Spirit, suspected of crude oil theft in line with laid down rules of engagement.The Army added that all arrested crew members on board the vessel would be evacuated to Abuja for investigation by the Defense Intelligence.Commander of the Nigerian Army, 63 Brigade, Brig. Gen. Ugochukwu Vitus Unachukwu said this when members of the House of Representatives Committee on Crude Oil theft visited and inspected two arrested vessels, MT Kali and Harbor Spirit allegedly with stolen crude.Brig. Gen. Unachukwu said the federal government has resolved to stamp out oil theft, saying, “We will pursue it to a logical conclusion.”He warned oil thieves to desist from the heinous crimes saying the nation needs the revenue coming from the sector.He warned that anyone caught stealing a gallon of crude oil would be regarded as a “national Saboteur”Brig. Gen. Unachukwu said the vessel and all crew members on board were arrested by Operatives of TANTITA Security Services in collaboration with the Armed Forces.Meanwhile, the House of Representatives Committee on Crude oil theft urged the arrested crew members on board the Harbor Spirit, to cooperate with the relevant security agencies to prove their innocence.Chairman of the Committee, Alhassan Ado Doguwa who led others on the visit to inspect the two vessels, said issues of oil theft, vandalisation of pipelines and other crises in the oil producing states poses serious concern to the National Assembly particularly and the House of Representatives Committee on Oil and Gas, particularly.He said, “We represent all of you but there’s nothing we can do. You have to cooperate with security to prove your innocence.”In a chat with newsmen, oil-producingDoguwa said members of the House of Representatives Committee on Crude Oil Theft embarked on the visit to the two vessels to have first-hand information of the happenings in the shores of the Oil and Gas industry in the Niger Delta region.“So, we came to see for ourselves on behalf of the National Assembly, especially the House of Representatives and Relevant Committee Chairman of the Oil and Gas Committee, I want to tell you that we are all out to see the increased production of oil and gas in the Country.”The lawmaker said the Committee on Crude Oil Theft will continue to do its best in terms of partnership and collaboration with TANTITA security and the Nigerian Security Agencies and others to see how they can promote the protection of the nation’s assets around the Country.
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