The Rivers State Commandant of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Muhammed Lawal Haruna, has decried the level of oil pollution in the Niger Delta occasioned by illegal oil bunkering and pipeline vandalism.
Haruna who spoke with our reporter at the weekend in Port Harcourt in the light of the recent interception of a vessel carrying large quantities of diesel at Onne, in Eleme Local Government Area of Rivers State, said the impact is very devastating.
“Illegal oil bunkering affects our environment. The pollution is very devastating in the Niger Delta areas. So inasmuch as people continue to engage in these illegalities our environment will be polluted and this is not safe for the residents,” he said.
He called on those involved in illegal oil bunkering and pipeline vandalism to key into several laudable economic programmes of both the state and federal governments and be useful to themselves.
He said the command is on the trail of big sponsors of illegal oil bunkering in its area of operation, adding that the full wrath of the law will catch up with them no matter how highly placed.
“Our success boils down to intelligence gathering. We are going after those that are involved in this criminal act, that is the main perpetrators of oil bunkering. We are going after them whether they are big people or not and when we get them we will take them to court,” he said.
He noted that they are having strong synergy with the judiciary especially the high court in the state, saying, “one source of information is the locals. There are some people that are not happy about what is happening to their environment so they are prepared to give us information”
“Again we have our intelligence everywhere and we have the support of most of the security agencies and we work in synergy which makes it easy for us to have intelligence about the activities of vandals and illegal oil bunkering,” he added.