Police, Navy Laud Amnesty Move By Bakassi Strike Force

niger-delta-indigenes-and-muhammadu-buhariThe Cross River State Commissioner of Police, Hafiz Inuwa, has expressed his willingness to work with the Bakassi Strike Force.

Mr Inuwa made the assertion following the call by the repentant militants to embrace amnesty once they get the right platform.

The Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral James Oluwole, also lauded the move by the group.

He stated that leaving sophisticated arms in the hands of untrained people could be very disastrous.

The Police and Navy bosses made the remarks in separate interviews with Channels Television in Calabar, the Cross River State capital.

Hasten Amnesty Process

They stressed the need for the Federal and state governments to look into the matter and hasten the amnesty process, in order to disengage the group of the many sophisticated weapons in its possession.

Mr Inuwa and Rear Admiral Oluwole noted that the action was commendable in view of the fact that no unauthorised citizen is backed by law to possess arms and ammunition, stressing that it could be abused while the repercussion could massive.

Following an interaction with the militants, Channels Television broke the news about the group’s call for amnesty in June 2016.

The Bakassi Strike Force, which operates in the creeks surrounding Cross River State and its environs, comprises of young men from Cross River and Akwa Ibom states.

Addressing reporters recently in Calabar, the leader of the militants, Simply Benjamin, who is popularly known as G1, again openly expressed their determination to lay off their arms to the government and embrace peace in view of the current happenings in the Niger Delta region.

Top security agencies have described the move as a right step towards the right direction for the region and Nigeria as a whole.

Until amnesty is granted to the militants by the appropriate quarters, the group remains in hiding as no one is privy to their hideouts.

Fishermen Urge FG To Beef Up Security In Calabar

fishermen, FG, CalabarFishermen and traders at the Henshaw beach in Calabar South Local Government Area of Cross River state, are calling on both the state and federal government to strengthen security along the high sea.

This according to them, is in order to prevent them from the daily harassment encountered on the sea by Cameroonian jam-darns.

The request is coming on the heels of series of harassment they have faced, which has in turn hindered them from their fishing activities.

As a result, fish and crayfish have become scarce commodities in recent times in Calabar, the Cross River state capital.

The Henshaw beach town is the major market known for the sale of crayfish, fresh fish, shrimps, snails and other sea-foods.

The market which is usually a beehive of activity as traders travel from within and outside the state to come buy the commodities, has dropped in the patronage level.

The fishermen and traders who have to get around Bakassi area of the high sea put the blame on the insecurity on the waters.

Speaking to Channels Television, they claimed they are usually detained and asked to pay a ransom before they are freed.

They added that in most cases, the money they travel with to purchase goods to bring back for sale, as well as their fishing boats are usually taken away from them.

One of the traders in tears, described her experience as an unfortunate one, while several other victims joined their voices in seeking help from the government.

The Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral James Oluwole, said the Navy was not aware of the claims, but promised to look into the matter and extend its security moves to the flash points.

Furthermore, he called on the community to avail security agencies with useful information that would help them in their intelligence gathering, while promising not to disclose the caller’s identity.

The government has also promised that it would continue to partner the Navy and Marine Police with necessary logistics in order to step up their security measures.

State Security Adviser, Jude Ngaji also assured them of the government’s prompt response to tackling the security challenge.

The fishermen and traders on the other hand are hopeful that the promised prompt intervention, would help them return to their businesses as soon as possible.

NOWA Screens 500 Women For Breast Cancer

NOWA, 500 women, breast cancerAt least 500 women in different categories have benefitted from free breast cancer screening and mammogram exercises at the Nigerian Navy hospital, Calabar the Cross River State Capital.

The Zonal Director, Eastern Naval Command, Mrs Omotayo Oluwale, opined that poverty is one of the leading causes of cancer fatalities among women who are financially constraint to access screening for early detection.

This according to her is the reason why the command organized free screenings for Naval officers’ wives as well as, Naval ratings’ wives in commemoration of those who have lost loved ones to cancer.

Although it currently has no cure, attention is being shifted to creating awareness, as early diagnosis remains the best cure in order to prevent deaths.

Led by wife of the Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Naval Command, the awareness walk took off at the Nigeria Navy barracks Akim, through major streets of Calabar and terminated at the Navy Hospital.

All adorned in pink attires which is a breast cancer identity, members of the Naval Officers Wives and Naval Rating Wives Associations, joined in the fight against the disease.

Before the screening, the women were sensitized on the causes of the disease, symptoms to look out for and when to seek immediate health attention.

War Against Cancer

Stressing on the essence of the sensitization walk, the coordinator of the event said that the free screening and mammogramming was the Navy’s way of giving back to the society in order for more women to be aware of their breast cancer status.

A health talk was later given by a doctor at the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University Of Calabar Teaching Hospital, (UCTH), Dr. Chinyere Akpawikato, where she enlightened the women more on the disease.

A group of Public Health workers had on Tuesday, embarked on a cancer awareness walk with similar objectives in Calabar.

Breast cancer has been Identified as the second leading cause of death after lung cancer.

Research has shown that an endless list of reasons can be responsible for cancer among which are: unhealthy lifestyles, technology advancement as well as genetics.

The war against cancer has also been ongoing in several other states of the federation.

This includes recent activities in Ogun state, southwest Nigeria, where the wife of State Governor, Mrs Olufunso Amosun, donated an ultra-modern cancer centre each at the general hospital in Abeokuta and Sango, as well as the Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital in Sagamu area of the state.

This according to her, was in a bid to avert unnecessary deaths as a result of cancer.

Nigerian Navy To Mount Choke Points On Niger Delta Creeks

Nigerian Navy, Niger Delta Creeks, Choke PointsNigerian Navy says plans are underway to completely get rid of about 40 creeks in the Niger Delta region before the second quarter of 2017.

The creeks have been identified by the Navy to be navigable and used for criminal elements in Nigeria’s south-south region.

Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas, disclosed this on Thursday during an assessment of facility at the Eastern Naval Command in Calabar, the Cross River State capital.

He expressed satisfaction with the level of steadfastness of officers of the command.

Vice Admiral Ibas further revealed that the government, in the shortest possible time, plans to man houseboats on the waters to check the activities of criminals.

He listed the Calabar River as one of the rivers identified for choke points, owing to the importance the water holds in the Gulf of Guinea.

The Navy boss assured passengers of their safety on the waters, saying the river would soon be completely taken over by the Navy.

He also warned unrepentant criminals to stay away from the waterways, stressing that the Nigerian Navy is ready to hunt them down.

According to the Navy, there are about 6,000 creeks in the entire Niger Delta region.

Naval Chief Flags Off Sea And Operational Inspection

nigerian navy jetty Operational InspectionThere is increased regional and national vigilance to curb the activities of pirates and other criminals in the maritime environment and the Nigerian Navy is joining the drive.

The Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas, gave the navy’s commitment to checking criminal activities in Nigeria’s waters during the official sea inspection and ‘Operation Tsare Teku’.

According to the Nigerian Navy the operation was launched to stem the wave of attacks on shipping and other legal activities.

Vice Admiral Ibas in company of other senior naval officers arrived at the Federal Ocean Terminal Jetty in Onne, Rivers State.

The mission was the official flag off of Operation Tsare Teku 111, which entails substantial occupation of the maritime environment to stem the rising wave of criminal activities on Nigerian waters.

According to the chief of naval staff, successes have be commendable.

After the launch of the operation in Onne the Naval Chief and his team moved to NNS Pathfinder in Port Harcourt, Rivers State’s capital for other operational inspections in the Eastern Naval Command.

The navy says there will be no slowing down in the fight against all forms of criminality on the nation’s waterways.

Navy Deploys Security Stations, Gunboats To Choke Points In Niger Delta

Nigerian Navy, Niger Delta, Choke PointsThe Nigerian Navy has deployed maritime security stations with fully equipped surveillance gadgets and gunboats to choke points in Nigeria’s Niger Delta region.

The Navy says the deployment is in line with efforts to sustain the fight against crude oil theft and other maritime crimes across the country.

The Flag Officer Commanding Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral James Oluwole, made the disclosure during an operation visit to the latest deployment to Cawthorne Channel in Kalabari in Akuku Toru Local Government Area of Rivers State.

He noted that more stations would be deployed to the choke points which have been identified as routes for high rate of crude oil theft and other insecurity challenges.

In his remark, the Commander of NNS Pathfinder, Commodore Obi Egbuchulam, revealed that 120,000 litres of crude oil which he said was careful disguised has been uncovered by the station.


Navy Arrests Suspected Militant Etim Thompson Uduak

Nigerian Navy arrests suspected militant Etim Thompson UduakThe Eastern Naval Command says it has arrested one of the strong forces purportedly behind series of kidnappings and militancy in Calabar, Cross River State’s capital.

According to the Navy, the alleged Kingpin, Etim Thompson Uduak, otherwise known as Sangatan, was arrested through collaborative efforts with personnel of Defence Intelligence Agency.

The Chief Staff Officer at the Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral Obi Ofodile, announced the arrest on behalf of the Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Naval Command at the end of the quarterly route match being observed by the Navy to keep them physically fit and mentally alert in the discharge of their duties.

“Besides the recent arrest of the militant, the command three weeks ago, in collaboration with other security agencies in the State also arrested some of the kingpins allegedly behind series of attacks in the state,” he said.

Addressing the gathering at the termination of the route match at the NNS Victory Ship, the FOCs representative disclosed that the command had recorded successes in its war against militancy and all security challenges.

According to him, areas of successes recorded include curtailing pipeline vandalism, attacks on crude oil pipelines, operation of illegal oil-line refineries, kidnapping, smuggling and other terrorist acts.

He thanked the Federal Government for its supports in providing the Navy with necessary patrol boats and other incentives which helped the command in arresting the Militant.

The arrest came just as kidnappers have abducted four persons in Lagos State, demanding 1.2 billion Naira from the families of the abducted persons.

They are asking for 300 million Naira from each family.

Nigerian Navy Tests Personnel For Hepatitis B

Nigerian Navy, Hepatitis BThe Nigerian Navy has begun to test its personnel for Hepatitis B at the Eastern Naval Command.

The Flag Officer Commanding (FOC), Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral James Oluwole, said that the exercise was part of activities to mark the World Hepatitis Day.

Rear Admiral Oluwole explained that the Navy is committed to ensuring that infected staff get to know their status on time and begin managing it at an earlier stage before its full blown.

He took the lead to be tested at the Headquarters of the command in Calabar, the Cross River State capital in south-south Nigeria.

The FOC stressed the need for personnel to have checkups done at every given point, in order to be abreast of their health challenges and begin treatment immediately.

He added that management of their health must come first for personnel to be able to function effectively.

In his remarks, the Commander of the Nigerian Navy Reference Hospital in Calabar, Surgeon Rear Admiral Abubakar Yusuf, promised that infected personnel would get free treatment towards managing the infection.

He also enlightened the Naval staff on the effects of Hepatitis B, saying it is a potentially life-threatening liver infection if allowed full blown.

Navy Offers Free Health Services To Community In Cross River

Navy, Ugep, Cross RiverThe Nigerian Navy has offered a free medical service to residents of Ugep community of Yakurr Local Government Area in Cross River State.

As part of activities to mark its 50th Anniversary, the Nigerian Navy said the gesture was also part of its social responsibility to the public, especially the vulnerable who cannot afford medical services.

The Medical team was led by Commodore Tanko Pani who represented the Flag Officer Commanding of Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral James Oluwole.

Commodore Pani said attaining the Golden Jubilee was a great feat to the command and giving back to the society was a great way of marking the milestone.

He urged the community to embrace the gesture while promising that the Navy would not relent in its commitment to safeguarding Nigeria’s waterways.

In his remarks, the Commander of the Nigerian Navy Reference Hospital in Calabar, Surgeon Rear Admiral Abubakar Yusuf, described the medical rhapsody as a means of promoting good health among communities.

While some of the beneficiaries, who were at least 50,000 commended the initiative, the Paramount Ruler of Ugep, Obol Opon Offem Ubana, also expressed gratitude to the Navy for choosing his community for the exercise.

The healthcare services rendered include eye screening, distribution of eye glasses as well as referral for surgery if need be.

Other free services were blood pressure checks, diabetes screening, malaria treatment, de-worming, distribution of insecticide treated mosquito nets, drugs, and a health talk.

Navy Concludes Multinational Maritime Exercise In C/River

Nigerian NavyThe Nigerian Navy and their colleagues from three other continents have concluded a one-week multinational maritime exercise.

The multinational exercise tagged ‘Operation Obangame Express’ was brought to a halt in Cross River State, southern Nigeria.

The Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral Atiku Abdulkadir, said that the exercise was meant to improve security in the Gulf of Guinea and enhance cooperation between the Navy in African nations and beyond.

“We are developing our capacities and it has come out very clearly during the exercise. Aside from that, it affords us to see how equipment from other countries and Nigeria can operate together and be effective in provision of maritime security,” he said.

The US-Africa Deputy Commander for Regional Operations, Vice Admiral Michael Franken, also stressed the importance of the event.

He urged the Gulf of Guinea nations and the various ministries in each country to share the best practices between themselves, stressing that “the United States is only here as an international partner”.

Since 2009, the yearly multinational exercise seeks to build relationships between navies of most African nations as well as the US, France and other EU participating nations.

32 nations and international organisations from four continents participated in the visit, search, arrest, rescue, seizure, maintenance, security and surveillance exercises including the tactical measures in reclaiming hijacked ships from pirates.

They also re-enacted the series of exercises on the ‘Awunde Code of Conduct’ on non-binding international agreement that lays down the standards which participating countries should follow.

Navy Intercepts Vessel With Migrants From Gabon In Calabar

navyThe Nigerian Navy on patrol in Calabar waters has intercepted a vessel from Gabon carrying about 300 passengers, adding that half of them do not have valid travelling documents.

Briefing reporters at the shoreline of the Calabar waters, Flag Officer Commanding (FOC) Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral Atiku Abdukadir, disclosed that Nigerians, as well as foreigners from West African Countries, Central African region, and about 100 children were also on board in the vessel.

According to the FOC, the passengers with valid documents, after been checked by relevant agencies, will be cleared while more than half the number without valid documents will be repatriated back to Gabon.

While speaking, the Comptroller of the Cross River State Immigration, Funke Adeuyi, advised that parents should strongly discourage their children from travelling abroad without necessary documents.

According to the Cross River State government, intended investors and residents in the state have no course for alarm following this continuous immigrants through the Calabar waters, as the state government remains committed towards security of lives and property.

On December 26, 2015, the Calabar waters took delivery of about 700 deportees from Gabon which was supposed to be the last, following the Federal Government’s directive of putting a stop to such illegalities on its waterways.

Crime In Nigeria’s Territorial Boundaries To End Soon – Navy

navyThe Eastern Naval Command of the Nigerian Navy has reiterated its commitment to increasing security on Nigeria’s water to put an end to crime in the nation’s territorial boundaries.

The Flag Officer Commanding (FOC), Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral Atiku Abubakar, made the statement while addressing reporters at the end of a sea inspection, code named, ‘Operation Mamaki’. In the operation, personnel undertook gun exercise, communication pattern, interrogation of vessels and helicopter training.

According to him, the essence of such operation is to strengthen Naval Personnel, reduce illegal oil bunkering and protect the nation’s mineral and natural resources.

Six ships participated in the operation, which was conducted within the Eastern Naval Command Maritime area from Calabar and Bonny fairway to the Brass terminal.

The Director of Operations at the Naval Headquarters, Rear Admiral Essien, maintained that the exercise by the fleet showed the readiness of the Eastern Naval Command to combat crime at any given circumstances.