A syndicate siphoning crude from Chevron/NNPC rigs on the high sea in Ondo State has been busted by the joint special forces on Monday.
Leading the special joint military forces through the creeks with his men from Galaxy Security Services, High Chief Bibopere Ajube, one of the prominent crusaders for Niger Delta development, tracked the evacuation points of the bunkering syndicate within elephant grass.
With Ajube’s experience, two monster boasts used for the illicit operations by the syndicate were located at different points where they were hidden within suspended residential raft houses at Awoye island community.
Through intelligence gathering, he was able to track down the rigs from which the syndicate siphoned illegally crude oil which were on the Atlantic Ocean in Ilaje Local Government Area of Ondo State.
Getting to the rigs tagged: CNL/NNPC JKT 1, CNL/NNPC JKT 2, CNL/NNPC JKT 9 and CNL/NNPC JKT 12, it was discovered that the metal stands of the rigs were conspicuously soaked with crude oil spilled from the hose used by the syndicate.
Returning from the high sea, the team towed the two monster boasts from Awoye community to a safe location within Ilaje Local Government and set them ablaze with the products therein.
The joint forces in seven boats, including two gunboats, navigated through the labyrinth creeks with Ajube directing the sail.
Addressing newsmen, High Chief Ajube lamented that the activities of bunkering syndicate, saying the act had undermined the economy of the nation.
He said: “We are making efforts to stop bunkering in our state and in the Niger Delta as a whole, though this is tedious and requires a lot of fund to do in terms of fueling the boats and staying on water for several hours to checkmate the perpetrators.
“Here in Ondo State, we talk to our youths not engage in illegal businesses, we encourage them to exert their energy in businesses that would earn them a living without security agents chasing them around.
“It is unfortunate that people engage in bunkering, a development which has drastically reduced the country’s earning and had forced the government to going into borrowing.
“Our people need to stop this act for our economy to improve through more earnings from the crude oil sales.
“On this discovery, we will have to inform the appropriate quarters to the rigs fixed with a view to preventing the perpetrators from continuing their illegal activities “