Nigerian Navy Reduces Piracy, Sea Robbery on Waterways- MD NLNG
The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Limited, Mr Tony Attah paid a courtesy call on the Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ekwe Ibas on Thursday 22 February 2018. Mr Tony Attah was accompanied on the visit by the Deputy Managing Director (NLNG), Mr Sadeeq A Mai Bornu, Manager-Corporate Security Service (NLNG), Mr Samson Aiyejuro and Senior Security Adviser (NLNG), Mr Kabiru Aminu.
Mr Tony Attah expressed that he was at the Naval Headquarters, Abuja to personally convey the appreciation of NLNG to the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ekwe Ibas for the assistance which the Nigerian Navy has continually provided in support of the NLNG’s operations in Bonny and along the approaches to Bonny Channel.
He emphasised that the incidences piracy and sea robbery attacks on shipping in the Bonny area had reduced drastically as a result of the Nigerian Navy’s patrol activities. Also, stating that the riverine environment had generally become volatile due to the activities of cultist and other miscreants.
In his response, the Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice Admiral IE Ibas welcomed the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer NLNG, Mr Tony Attah and his entourage to the Naval Headquarters, Abuja. Vice Admiral Ibas noted with delight that the courtesy call was an appreciation visit and not to express concerns regarding NLNG operations.
The CNS further stated that upon assumption of office, he emphasised the increased use of surveillance systems as well as Maritime Domain Awareness (MDA) infrastructure in support of Nigerian Navy’s operations which has enormously enhanced Nigeria’s maritime security architecture. While acknowledging that there were still some shadow zones or blind spots along the Nigerian coastline, he expressed that the Nigerian Navy had made representation to the Rivers State government for land to accommodate more MDA facilities. He further expressed that the Nigerian Navy has essentially had to expand its maritime operations into the back waters in order to forestall other mutations of maritime crimes like crude oil theft, pipeline vandalism as well as sea robbery within the coastal areas and waters ways.
The CNS highlighted that the average transit time of 2 hours between Onne Port and Bonny has in the past hampered Nigerian Navy’s response capability to incidence of maritime crime in Bonny and it would be desirable to have some jetty facilities for Nigerian Navy Ships in Bonny. He then called on the MD/CEO NLNG to consider the provision of berthing spaces for NN ship in Bonny which will enhance NLNG operations. The CNS employed the MD NLNG to proactively handle community relations in the Bonny area in line with its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in order to forestall restiveness and community agitations.
The CNS emphasised that for the Nigerian Navy to effectively carry out her duties there was the need to improved channel conservancy in Nigeria waters through dredging and buoyage. He particularly noted that the Escravos channel had recorded several grounding of ships in the last few months and was optimistic that this would be addressed by the Nigerian Ports Authority.
In closing, the CNS expressed that he was appreciative of the several acknowledgements by both local and international maritime stakeholders of the Nigerian Navy’s efforts at drastically addressing maritime security in Nigerian waters through aggressive patrols and surveillance.
AYO OLUMIDE OLUGBODE
Director of Information
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Report By: PRNigeria.com