Akam James, Yenagoa
Apparently disturbed by the spate of criminal activities in the Niger-Delta region, authorities of the Joint Military Task Force, code named Operation Pulo Shield Thursday warned suspected kidnappers, Sea pirates and criminals along the waterways of the region to desist from crime and take up gainful employment in the region.
The JTF Commander, Major General Emmanuel Atewe, who gave the warnings during a call on him by the new Air Officer Commanding (AOC) Mobility Command of the Nigerian Air Force, Air Vice Marshal Frank Nyoyoko, said though it still baffles the command the reason healthy youths would resort to crime instead of gainful employment, while urging all the youths involved in criminal activities to have a rethink or have themselves to blame.
Atewe called on stakeholders in the Niger Delta region to join hands to fight against criminalities, “the JTF is committed to zero tolerance campaign against oil theft and illegal oil bunkering in the Niger Delta. We are committed towards total eradication of oil related crimes”.
Atewe said the JTF has so far intercepted and arrested several illegal oil bunkering vessels and suspects and handed them over to Prosecuting Agencies for prosecution.
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Maritime Security News Note:
Actions speak louder than words. Warnings like this are commonplace from the Nigerian Navy and the Joint Task Force, yet maritime crime and piracy and the kidnapping of crew continues. It would be very interesting to know whom the “prosecuting agencies” mentioned in the article are, too. Perhaps a series of high profile public trials of oil thieves and pirates might do more to dissuade youths from joining their ranks…