1m litres Crude Recovered during Crackdown on Illegal Oil Refineries in Rivers State

The 6 Division Garrison of the Nigerian Army in Port Harcourt has successfully uncovered an illicit crude oil refinery hidden within the forests of the Odagwe community in the Etche Local Government Area of Rivers State.

1m litres Crude Recovered during Crackdown on Illegal Oil Refineries in Rivers State

This discovery comes just a few days following an announcement by the Nigerian Navy that its forces had dismantled an unauthorized oil refining operation harboring approximately 750,000 liters of illicitly refined diesel at the Abonema Wharf in the vicinity of Port Harcourt.

In a concerted effort to combat oil theft and unauthorized oil bunkering, the operation spearheaded by the Commander of the 6 Division Garrison and Sector 3, Operation Delta Safe, Brigadier General Eddie Effiong, resulted in the seizure of one million liters of crude oil.

The operation further revealed the presence of eight storage tanks and five processing units within the forest, collectively holding in excess of one million liters of purloined crude.

Brigadier General Effiong, addressing the press shortly after the raid on Friday, revealed that the operation was initiated based on credible intelligence. He noted that each storage tank was found to be filled with around 100,000 liters of crude.

Effiong explained that the culprits were in the process of converting the crude into Diesel, also known as Automated Gas Oil (AGO), when the military personnel descended upon the location.

He elaborated, “As part of our ongoing campaign against the theft of crude oil and unauthorized bunkering activities, we received reliable information about the initiation of an illegal refinery on this side of the road, following the dismantlement of a similar operation on the opposite side.

“The criminals have since moved here, setting up new illegal refineries to resume their banned operations. Upon our arrival, it was evident they had indeed shifted operations to this area and were in the midst of establishing additional illegal sites.

“At this newly established illicit refining site, our team discovered eight tanks and five boilers, with preliminary assessments indicating that each tank contains no less than 100,000 liters of stolen crude, intended for processing into AGO.”

The Garrison Commander vowed that the division will persist in its efforts to eradicate illegal oil bunkering and theft across the Niger Delta region. He mentioned that the division is also exploring non-violent strategies such as engaging community leaders and youth through dialogue and educational seminars to curb these illicit activities.

Brigadier General Effiong remarked, “We are engaging with community leaders and youths, emphasizing the significant role of crude oil in our national economy. The adverse effects of these illegal activities are felt by every Nigerian, and continuing down this path only compounds our economic challenges.”

He urged individuals involved in these detrimental activities within the state and the broader Niger Delta area to cease their actions and seek legitimate means of livelihood.

He concluded, “Despite economic hardships, resorting to criminal activities is not justifiable. Our nation suffers as a result, and the repercussions of these actions extend to all of us.”

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