by Adeniyi Abdul
President Goodluck Jonathan is apparently sick of crude oil theft in Nigeria and wants it eradicated as soon as possible. Speaking at the Presidential Maritime Security Retreat in Abuja he stated that a solution had to be found by all parties involved as the situation is a stain on the image of the country.
“We will be decisive in putting an end to this malaise,” President said. “Our charge to all relevant agencies and departments of government is to work cooperatively with the required urgency this challenge deserves.”
“It is embarrassing that it is only in Nigeria that crude oil is stolen,” he continued. “The maritime sector is a critical component in the economic development of a modern state, listed poaching, piracy, pipeline vandalism, coastal insecurity, crude oil theft, illegal bunkering, non-payment of statutory levies and charges, illegal entry of ships into our territorial waters, illegal importation of arms and hard drugs, among other sundry crimes as some of the problems militating against the development of Nigerian maritime resources.”
“To this end, the Maritime Operations Coordinating Committee is already working to address all illegalities in the maritime domain. The Committee comprises all maritime agencies, Ministries of Transport, Finance and Justice. Also, a sustainable patrol arrangement to enhance collection of revenue and ensure maritime safety has also been approved. We are encouraging an integrated port security system in all the ports for maximum result.”