By Gom Mirian, Abuja
The Nigerian Navy (NN), on Thursday, apprehended 10 Nigerian pirates who hijacked a Chinese vessel, MV HAILUFANG II off the coast of Cote D’ Ivoire within the Gulf of Guinea Waters.
The pirates, who attacked the vessel took control of it and directed the vessel towards Nigerian Waters, said the Coordinator Defence Media Operations(DMO), DHQ, Major General John Enenche at a press conference in Abuja.
The DMO spokesperson, said the Naval operatives who recovered the hijacked vessel, rescued 18 members of the crew comprising eight Chinese, three Ghanaians and seven Ivorians, all unhurt.
“The Nigerian Navy was alerted of the pirate attack and immediately, the Nigerian Navy Ship NGURU was dispatched to intercept the vessel
” On interception of the vessel at about 140 nautical miles south of Lagos Fairway Buoy, the pirates refused to comply to the orders of the Nigerian Navy Ship, hence the Nigerian Navy had to conduct an opposed boarding of the vessel. Enenche said.
On other recent operations conducted by Nigerian troops in the Niger Delta region, Enenche said about nine illegal refining sites, storage facilities were destroyed by troops under operation Delta Safe deployed around Ugbodede, Uwakeno, Opumami, Banga Communities and around Escravos general area in Warri South LGA of Delta State.
“During the operations, the team located and dismantled illegal refining sites and a wooden boat with 3 coolers, 136 dugout pits, 201 surface metal storage tanks and 174 ovens laden with about 14,434 barrels of suspected stolen crude oil as well as 1,385,000 litres of product suspected to be illegally refined AGO
“Others are 4 dugout pits with about 440.3 barrels of stolen crude oil and 180,000 litres of products suspected to be illegally refined AGO.
“Similarly, on 11 May 20, Forward Operating Base ESCRAVOS intercepted 3 large wooden boats around Madangho and Sara Creek in Warri South LGA of Delta State.
” The boats were laden with about 12.6 barrels of suspected stolen crude oil and 43,000 litres of products suspected to be illegally refined AGO,” he said.
Enenche further disclosed that troops Operating Base IBAKA patrol team around Effiat Waterways intercepted an abandoned wooden boat laden with 310 x 50kg bags of foreign parboiled rice suspected to be smuggled from the Republic of Cameroon.
Also intercepted was an abandoned medium size wooden boat laden with about 67 drums of products suspected to be PMS around Enwang Creek.
He said the seized bags of foreign parboiled rice, boat and drums of suspected PMS were currently in Forward Operating Base IBAKA custody.
According to him, additional 220 personnel have been trained across the Armed Forces of Nigeria to further boost the capacity of medical personnel in the management of COVID-19, bringing the total trained number of personnel to 300.