Navy seeks partnership with boat companies to curb piracy

Martha Obi, Abuja

Director of Naval Information, Commodore Chris Ezekobe with the Director General of Voice of Nigeria, Mr Osita Okechukwu in his office

The Nigerian Navy is seeking best possible ways to partner with local boat companies to help  curb militant attacks and piracy in the country.

The Director of Naval Information, Commodore Chris Ezekobe made this known in Abuja when the Nigerian Navy paid a courtesy visit to Director General of Voice of Nigeria, Mr Osita Okechukwu in his office.

Commodore Ezekobe highlighted some of the activities of the Nigerian Navy under the leadership of Chief Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas and their focus on the Niger Delta  in partnership with a local firm which they have received fifty boats already adding that they are partnering with them to build more boats within their own facilities.

According to Commodore Ezekobe, the Navy within the next three months is bound to hit the one hundred mark target hopefully and that would go a long way in curbing the activities of piracy in Nigerian waters.

He said ‘Navy has initiated what the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibas called a Choke Point Regime that  makes uses of house boats stationed in strategic junctions of the Niger Delta within the water ways in order to make it  difficult for crude oil thieves and illegal bunkers to move stolen products from the hinterland to ships waiting out there at sea’’.

He said, on the sea ward side, Navy has initiated Operation Siraco which was put in place in April when they had about forty-seven piracy attack  some were specialised at hostage taking and demanding ransoms, so during the operation which was to run for ninety days, they had only two incidents and one of these incidents was a failed burden so effectively, they had only one incident which they are hopeful that in the next ninety days, they will have zero attacks of piracy in our waters.

Aside from this, Commodore Ezekobe  said the Chief of Naval Staff has directed all operational commands to put capital ships at sea to improve Naval presence.

He added that the Navy has a Special Forces unit engaged in the North east with specific missions.

Media Partnership

The Commodore said the leadership of the Navy under Vice Admiral Ibas is soliciting the continuous support of the Voice of Nigeria and other media houses in helping to propagate as well as inform the populace, create awareness as to the consequences of the crime committed in the Niger Delta.

He noted that media houses can help inform the general populace of the consequence of militancy on the economy.

The Director of Voice of Nigeria, Mr Osita Okechukwu Praised the Nigerian Navy for their effort in curbing piracy adding that President Muhammed Buhari’s administration cannot commission rascals to manage Nigeria territorial waters.

He also extended his regards to Chief of Naval Sfaff , Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas for his efforts and initiatives in curbing piracy and promised that the media will support Nigeria Navy in the fight.

 Nnenna.O