Port Harcourt — The Joint Military Taskforce operating in the Niger Delta, codenamed Operation Delta Safe, has again destroyed and set ablaze a vessel, MV Ofuoma, laden with over 20,000 litres of suspected illegally refined Automotive Gas Oil, commonly known as diesel, offshore Rivers State.
The razing of MV Ofuoma alongside a wooden boat used in supplying illegal product is coming few weeks after OPDS operatives arrested and set ablaze a vessel, MV Cecelia with 200,000litres of AGO used as storage tank for trading of suspected illegally refined AGO at a jetty in Gbalajam, Woji area of Port Harcourt.
Speaking, the Commander of Operation Delta Safe, Rear Admiral Olusegun Ferreira, assured that the joint taskforce under his watch will not rest on it oars in the fight against crude oil theft, vandalism and criminality in the region.
The OPDS boss recalled that the vessel, MV Ofuoma, was intercepted and arrested at Abuloma Jetty in Port Harcourt on 27th of August 2023.
Ferreira explained that the destruction of MV Ofuoma came after the confirmation of the illegality of the product being stored in the vessel, warning other intending criminals that OPDS will not relent in its efforts in going after economic saboteurs.
He said, “OPDS is determined in ensuring that no stone is left unturned in the fight against crude oil theft, vandalism and other criminalities in the Niger Delta region.”
Ferreira represented by the Maritime Component Commander, OPDS, Commodore Adedokun Siyanbade, urged members of the public to continue to support the JTF with credible information in order to ensure that crude oil theft and other related crimes are eradicated in the region.
He disclosed that samples of the petroleum product inside MV Ofuoma were taken by officials of NMDPRA for testing, and the result confirmed that the products were adulterated.
“The product failed the standard requirement for automotive gas oil and thus confirmed to be legally refined. With the confirmation of the illegality of the product being stored by MV Ofuoma, the vessel will be handled in line with extant directives.
“OPDS will not relent in its efforts at going after economy saboteurs and we will also ensure that crude oil theft and other related crime are eradicated within the joint operations area.”