Nigerian army uncovers illegal oil depot in Rivers state
The landmark discovery was made October 2, 2018, 16 40,000 litre capacity trucks parked in the premises awaiting loading were impounded as one of the operators was apprehended and taken in by the team of Soldiers that uncovered the illegal deal.
The illegal loading bay was operated at the facility used by the defunct Union Dicon Salt located in Macoba, close to the Naval Dockyard, in Port Harcourt metropolis.
Briefing newsmen shortly after touring round the facility to figure out how the shady activity was carried out by the oil thieves, the Army spokesman Aminu Iliyasu, a Colonel said that the bursting of the illegal petroleum loading depot followed a “discreet information.”
He spoke on behalf of the General Officer Commanding (GOC), 6 Division, Major-General Jamil Sarham and said that the activities of illegal oil bunkerers have become too daring and have negatively affected lives of members of the public, just as it is affecting the economy of the nation.
He said, “With these activities going on in this area, it means that some people would be super-rich and some another people will remain super-poor”.
He described the activities as a serious economic sabotage and environmental pollution dangerous to human lives.
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“When the adulterated product is supplied to members of the public, it endangers the lives of Nigerians. If we don’t talk, it would consume everybody.
“It is a serious economic sabotage and has dangerous health implications The 16 trucks were found in the premises. Ten of the trucks were already loaded with products”, he said
He warned those involved in the economic sabotage to stop, or leave the States under 6 Division, vowing to prosecute any person caught indulging in oil theft.
He added that whatever is the outcome of the investigation, suspects and exhibits would be handed over to sister security agencies for further investigation.
Earlier, Lt. Col. Ibrahim Buhari, Commanding Officer, 29 Battalion, in 6 Division, said 10 of the 16 trucks had already been loaded with products ready for the wee hours of the night to move along with other trucks that bought genuine products from a legal tank farm being operated next to the illegal depot to beat security on highway.
Six power generating sets and different sizes of host were among items recovered at the depot.
Registration plate numbers of the vehicles were discovered to have been deliberately detached from the trucks, however two of the plate numbers found rested on two of the trucks were marked, RUM 346 KA and DEG 512 XA.
The Army said the trucks would be later moved to the Barracks were they would later be formerly handed over to the operatives of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), for the prosecution of the suspect and possible appearance of the owners of the trucks, who would want to come to claim their property.