No fewer than 637 illegal refineries were destroyed by the Nigerian Navy in the Niger Delta in 2018.
The Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas, disclosed this on Monday in Abuja, while briefing newsmen on the scorecard of the Navy in 2018.
Ibas was represented by Rear Admiral Belgory Ibe-Enwo, Chief of Policy and Plans, Naval Headquarters, Abuja
According to him, 104 speed boats and 340 suspects were also arrested in connection with illegal bunkering or snuggling during the period.
The Operation involves air surveillance, insertion of Special Forces by gunboats, pulling down of located illegal refining sites with the use of swamp buggies and arrest/destruction of boats and barges found in such locations.
The CNS said that the quantity of crude oil lost to illegal oil refining activities during the period was about 277, 040 barrels.
He added that about 23.1 million litres of Automated Gas Oil (AGO) or diesel, 212, 610 litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) and 1.2 million litres of Domestic Producing Kerosene (DPK) were also lost.
He said that records indicated that the navy through its “Operation Tsare Teku” recorded a total of 34 pirates’ attacks during the period.
“A total of 34 pirates’ attacks on ships were reported, with nine successful and 25 unsuccessful.
“Furthermore, a total of 20 sea robbery attacks were reported in 2018, with six successful and 14 unsuccessful.
“Additionally, a total of 46 vessels and barges were arrested for involvement in maritime crimes during the period,” Ibas said.