By Robert AKPAN, Senior Investigator Correspondent, Lagos/
LAGOS- ATTEMPTS by some unscrupulous Nigerians to siphon premium Motor Spirit otherwise known as Fuel to the neigbouring Benin Republic had been foiled by eagle-eyed operatives of the Lagos Command of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps NSDC.
Sources said the pipeline vandals who were caught in the act by the operatives had perfected plans to ship the scarce commodity to the neighbouring Benin Republic which the were rounded up in the middle of the night.
A statement by the Command’s PRO, Assistant Superintendent of Corps 1, ASC1 Abolurin Oluwaseun Olumide and made available to CrimeWorld magazine online quoted the Lagos State Command Commandant, Douglas Eweka Okoro as vowing to bring pipeline vandalism and oil theft to a stop in the state.
He said, “In lieu of the renewed and re – invigorated efforts of the Commandant, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Lagos State Command, Commandant Eweka Douglas Okoro, MSC, ACMA, CNA, towards ensuring a zero tolerance against oil pipeline vandalism and other form of criminalities in Lagos state, the marine and anti – vandal team of the Badagry division, of the Command, who were on routine surveillance and patrol, as a result of a well received credible intelligence about the activities of some suspected vandals, yesterday, on Friday, 4th March, 2022, midnight at about 02:15hrs, uncovered the planned criminal activities, of some suspected vandals who had attempted to syphon one hundred and seventeen (117) 25LTR kegs(yellow), loaded with Premium Motor Spirit(PMS), from the Badagry area to the Republic of Benin( neighbouring country ).
*Officials of the NSCDC and the seized kegs of fuel…
The gallant marine and anti – vandal team, of the Badagry division, who intercepted the suspected vandals said, “they uncovered the well orchestrated attempt of the men of the night, to syphon about one hundred and seventeen (117) 25ltr kegs(yellow) loaded with Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) and some empty kegs, via a boat, from the Alakoto – Meji area of Badagry to the Republic of Benin( neighbouring country ).
The remarkably operational Divisional Officer, Badagry Division, Lagos State Command, Chief Superintendent of Corps ( CSC ) Akinyemi Rasheed Ayodeji, who led the operation, further said, “the suspected vandals at the scene took to their heels, on sighting the gallant men of the division, when they were about perfecting their evil act of economic sabotage.” Thereafter, the team was left with no other choice than to further comb the Alakoto – Meji area same hour, after which they evacuated the suspected products to the division, situated at Ibereko, Badagry. The division’s intelligence unit has also commenced preliminary investigation into the matter, having informed the Command’s Head Quarters immediately.
The Commandant, Lagos State Command, Commandant Eweka Okoro, has today, Saturday, 5th March, 2022, immediately ordered the Anti – vandal unit of the Command to evacuate the suspected products back to the Lagos State Command, Head Quarters, in Alausa – Ikeja, Lagos, in a bid to launch further investigation into the matter.
The Commandant, Commandant Eweka Okoro has also directed that the security of lives and property and the protection of oil pipelines in the Badagry Division and other oil pipeline areas, in the state be beefed up immediately, especially at this critical time of fuel scarcity.”
Continuing, Olumide added, “Commandant Eweka Okoro also affirmed that the dastardly act of the suspected vandals was clinically forestalled by the operatives of the Command, as a result of the deployment of high – level professionalism and credible and actionable intelligence displayed by our men.
The Commandant said that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation ( NNPC ) office in the state has also been contacted for proper evacuation of the products because of the highly inflammable nature of it.
Finally, Commandant Eweka Okoro, who praised the gallantry of the operatives of the Badagry division, also seized the occasion of this excellent operation, to further reiterate the Command’s readiness and commitment to ensuring a zero tolerance against oil pipeline vandalism and other form of criminalities in the state. He further assured the good people of Lagos and the Government of Lagos State, of his unflinching commitment towards eradicating oil pipeline vandalism and every form of economic sabotage in the state.
He further said “the Command has also immediately launched a search light on the suspected fleeing vandals, in a bid to bring them to book.” This action will deter others, who may be interested in such form of economic sabotage, to desist totally from it.”
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