The Nigerian Army on Wednesday in Calabar said it destroyed 36 petroleum tankers and six “Cotonou” boats allegedly used for illegal bunkering in Cross River.
The outgoing Commander of 13 Brigade, Nigerian Army, Okwudili Azinta, announced this while presenting a scorecard of his command activities in 2013.
Mr. Azinta said that the tankers and boats were destroyed at different locations in the state by members of the Joint Task Force, JTF.
According to him, oil theft in Cross River has reduced while most creeks that were being used to refine stolen petroleum products have also been destroyed.
“With the combined efforts of the JTF in Cross River, sea robbery and piracy have also been reduced in the waterways of Cross River and Akwa Ibom. Also, there is no militant camp in Cross River; the Efut Esighi militant and shrine camps in Akpabuyo Local Government Area of Cross River have been destroyed by the Nigerian Army. All these were made possible by the zero tolerance to illegal oil bunkering in the state,” he said.
He said that the command under his leadership had trained 40 officers on intelligence information gathering.
“The army needs appropriate and timely information to strengthen its operational network. The Army also needs expertise to collate, gather and make information analysis which can be used to arrest crisis before it escalates. The idea of the training was nursed from the fact that the military needed such training on warfare in the present 21st century,” he said.
The commander also said that the brigade, under his command, hosted and won the 82 Division Inter-Brigade Proficiency Combat Competition.
The command was executing some projects in the barracks which include the renovation of the old residence of the former Governor-General of Southern Nigeria.
Others are single officers’ accommodation, 13 Brigade Urban Communication masts, and a block of 30 flats for soldiers and others.
Mr. Azinta, who has been transferred to 4 Brigade Nigerian Army, Benin, as the new commander, advised officers and men of the command to key into his leadership style in building the Nigerian Army worthy of emulation.