NAF Destroys Illegal Oil Sites In Rivers, Others

The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has announced the successful destruction of 13 illegal oil refining sites and seven boats in Rivers, Bayelsa, and Imo states. This operation was part of the Air Component of Operation Delta Safe, aimed at curbing illegal oil activities in the region.

In a statement released on Sunday, NAF spokesman Edward Gabkwet detailed that between June 18 and 22, 2024, airstrikes were conducted, resulting in the obliteration of the illegal refining sites and the seven Cotonou boats. Additionally, the operation disrupted five buses that were attempting to siphon suspected crude oil products from surface tanks.

“Some of the illegal sites were discovered near Imo River on 18 June 2024 with 7 overhead tanks, which were subsequently destroyed while several suspected bunkerers were seen fleeing,” the statement partly read.

“Airstrikes were also extended to Wilcourt in Rivers State on 19 June 2024 after an illegal site and canoe filled with illegally refined products, as well as some gun boats, were seen.

“Similarly, following intelligence of some illegal refining sites located about 6km from Tunu in Bayelsa State, the aircrew proceeded to the location to identify and destroy the site, a task carried out with the utmost precision.”

“Another significant strike undertaken by the air component was carried out on 22 June 2024, when the crew spotted 5 x J5 buses, probably reconfigured into mini tankers, at the bank of Imo River attempting to siphon illegally refined products.”

“Amazed at this change of tactics by these economic saboteurs, the crew did not hesitate to immediately destroy the illegal refining sites feeding the buses. The J5 buses were later seen dispersed with some taking cover under trees to avoid detection.”

He said airstrikes against economic saboteurs and oil thieves would be sustained until the activities of the criminals are reduced to the barest minimum.