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Oil theft: NSCDC apprehends 132 suspects, seizes 36 trucks in 2018


The Rivers State Command of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps on Friday said that it had arrested 132 suspected oil thieves in different parts of the state.



The agency also disclosed that its operatives impounded 36 trucks and secured 65 convictions in 2018.



Also seized within the period under review are 15 vehicles, six vessels and 170 drums of adulterated petroleum products.



Speaking with journalists in Port Harcourt, the state capital, state NSCDC Commandant, Mohammed Haruna, explained that the Command would not relent in its efforts towards stamping out oil theft and related crimes.



He pointed out that despite the challenges posed by militants, oil thieves, vandals and miscreants, his Command would remain focused in achieving its mandate.



He said, “Today, I state that the NSCDC has lived up to expectation through checkmating vandalism of the nation’s critical assets, enlightening, encouraging and updating the general public on the role of the corps in relation to private guards companies operators and our role in disaster management in the state.



“The corps’ readiness to protect our national assets and infrastructure is non-negotiable. This has yielded positive results as cases of vandalism of the nation’s critical assets have drastically reduced in the state.



“In the bid to checkmate the excesses of oil thieves in the state, the corps has arrested no fewer than 132 suspects, impounded 15 vehicles, 36 trucks; all loaded with stolen petroleum products.



“The corps also impounded 20 boats, six vessels and 170 drums; all conveying adulterated products within the year 2018.



“The Command has secured no fewer than 65 convictions so far, in cases relating to illegal dealings in petroleum products, pipeline vandalism, telecommunications facilities, PHCN facilities as well as civil cases against the corps in the state.”



He also stated that the corps had performed creditably in the area of disaster management, rescue operations and emergency evacuation, adding that the state NSCDC had done well in its responsibility in peace and conflict resolution.



Haruna recalled that the state NSCDC command had trained 194 guards for private security firms in the state in 2018.



He said, “The corps in the state has been able to train guards from 55 licensed private guard companies in the state this year.



“So far, as a result of the sensitisation and clampdown on illegal operators in the state, we have a total of 173 private guards companies in the state out of which only 12 have yet to update their records.”



He listed some of the challenges facing the security outfit as inadequate equipment and limited manpower.



According to him, “Inadequate equipment such as gunboats, speedboats, etc, is a challenge. So, we are soliciting the support of the Federal Government to assist us to do better in 2019.”
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