By Doyin Ojosipe
In the fight against oil bunkering, the Joint Military Task Force (JTF) in the Niger Delta, known as Operation Pulo Shield has revealed that apart from the several illegal refineries discovered and destroyed in the Niger Delta region, it has also discovered an illegal oil bunkering hose connected to Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), with two Cotonou boats, filled with suspected stolen crude oil.
In a statement issued yesterday by its spokesman, Lt.-Col. Mustapha Anka, the Task Force has also destroyed about 31 illegal refineries, while also intercepting some 32 plastic tankers with capacity of 200 litres each, filled with substance suspected to be stolen crude oil siphoned from an oil well head.
In his words: “Thirteen illegal oil distillation camps were also destroyed around Gbarum Market, in Southern Ijaw local government area of Bayelsa state, where oil thieves operate with plastic tanks filled with suspected illegally acquired crude oil.
“The sites and the equipment were destroyed along with the trucks and products. Other items discovered include 32 plastic tankers with capacity of 200 litres each filled with substance suspected to be stolen crude oil siphoned from an oil well head.”
The spokesman said in the Sector 2 area, JTF troops patrolling along Igbemotoru area scuttled 18 illegal crude oil refineries where oil thieves operated with seven Cotonou boats filled with stolen diesel and 13 illegal storing facilities.
He said the camps and the products were destroyed, while seven suspects were also arrested along Nonwa Tai Road operating a truck containing 160 drums of stolen oil.
Anka said the truck was destroyed while suspects were handed over to the JTF for further action.