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Nigeria loses N1.29trn annually to crude oil theft –Speaker

The Speaker of House of Representatives, Hon. Abbas Tajudeen, has said that Nigeria loses a sum of N1.29 trillion annually to oil theft, pipeline vandalism…

The Speaker of House of Representatives, Hon. Abbas Tajudeen, has said that Nigeria loses a sum of N1.29 trillion annually to oil theft, pipeline vandalism and other forms of criminality.

Hon. Tajudeen, who spoke through the Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Defence, Hon. Babajimi Benson, at the commissioning of the Nigerian Navy Training Command at Eleme, Rivers State on Friday, said that Nigeria lost about 300,000 barrels of crude oil per day to theft.

He said the trend posed a challenge to the Nigerian Navy to rise up to its mandate of contributing to the survival of the national economy.

He urged the Nigerian Navy to defend and protect the sovereignty of Nigeria’s territorial waters against all forms of threats.

He said, “Unfortunately, it is estimated that Nigeria loses over 300,000 barrels of crude oil daily to oil theft, pipeline vandalism and other forms of criminality. This has led to revenue losses estimated at N1.29trillion annually.

“Therefore, concerned about the adverse effects of oil theft in Nigeria, I inaugurated a special committee on Crude Oil Theft Loses on November 22, 2023, to determine decisive remedial actions to be taken.

“I commend the Nigerian Navy on the steps taken so far, and I urge the Navy to sustain the momentum.”

The Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla, thanked the Rivers State Government for the donation of the entire complex to demonstrate the existing cordial relationship between the Nigerian Navy and Rivers State.

Vice Admiral Ogalla said the relocation of the Headquarters Naval Training Command from Lagos to Ebubu-Eleme in Rivers State would bolster human capacity development of personnel of the Nigerian Navy.

The Chief of Naval Staff also stated that it would strengthen cooperation towards the overall national security while also enhancing national development.

He said, “It will also assist in providing the enabling environment for learning and enable us to carry out the statutory manning of the entire state, and national security of our country.

“This is in line with Mr President’s mandate given to us to provide the enabling environment for the harnessing of the enormous economic potential inherent in our blue economy for the overall good, national prosperity and development.”

The Chief of Naval Staff assured that the Nigerian Navy would continue to carry out operations to ensure security of the nation’s maritime domain as well as secure Rivers State and the entire Niger Delta region.

Earlier, Rivers State Governor, Sir Siminalayi Fubara, urged the Nigerian Navy to ensure that its investment in the professional development of naval personnel translated into visible advancement in the security and prosperity of the nation’s maritime interests and blue economy.

The governor noted that the event completed a development journey that started in April, 2023.

That was when his predecessor, Governor Fubara said, graciously ceded the dilapidated structures of the abandoned former Ambassador Nne Krukrubo Model Government Secondary School to the Nigerian Navy for use.

He emphasised that the training command was now a remarkable evidence of the great strides made by President Bola Tinubu in strengthening the combat capabilities of the Nigerian Navy to deal with the expanded spectrum of maritime security threats in the nation.

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