The Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS) DELTA, on Wednesday destroyed over 1000 illegal refineries with swamp buggies in Delta creeks.
The Commander, NNS Delta , Commodore Ibrahim Dewu, said the illegal refineries were destroyed in Otumara, Ogbegugu, Okpuku creeks and Bennett Island with the aid of swamp buggies, amphibious vehicles used in traversing swamps, PM news reported.
Dewu said, “We decided to apply swamp buggies because they are more environmental friendly and make it difficult for the perpetrators to resuscitate the illicit businesses after crushing their facilities.
“So far the exercise has been successful and we will not rest on our oars until the illicit trade is completely eradicated in our maritime domain.”
The commander added that the use of swamp buggies would bring a lasting solution to the ongoing economic sabotage.
On Tuesday, he led some navy personnel and journalists to Bennett Island in Warri South Local Government Area of the state to monitor the operation.
He told newsmen, “The perpetrators in Bennett Island set fire round the illegal refineries to prevent us and the swamp buggy from gaining access.
“However, we were able to find our way into the sites and crushed their equipment despite the thick smoke and rain.
“Since we started clamping down on the illegal refineries with the aid of swamp buggies, the perpetrators have been restless’’, the commander said.
“This might have generated the recent campaign for the removal of the Commander, Joint Task Force (JTF), code name “Operation Delta Safe,’’ Rear Adm. Suleiman Apochi, by the people.
“The campaign against JTF is a distraction; we will not be deterred.”