Nigerian Navy said on Tuesday said that its operations have improved the safety of the country’s maritime domain leading to the arrest of 42 vessels involved in various act of illegalities in the last one year.
Chief of Naval Transformation, Naval Headquarters Abuja , Rear Admiral Begroy Enyinna Ibe-Enwo disclosed this during a press briefing on activities line up to mark the 62 anniversary of the Nigerian Navy.
He said that Nigerian Navy had sustained an aggressive patrol within the nations maritime environment covering over 22,000 hours with newly acquired 173 assorted boats, including Epenal Boats, Rigid Hull Inflatable Boats, and Hydrographic Survey Boats in the last one year.
Ibe-Enwo said that 6 OCEA Fast Patrol Boats that were recently acquired from France which will be commissioned soon.
According to him, the suspects who were arrested on board the seized vessels “are undergoing various stages of investigations and prosecutions.”
He also attributed the successes to the upgrade of surveillance over our maritime environment in recent times.
“This has been made possible through upgrade of available maritime surveillance equipment, which includes the Regional Maritime Awareness Capability (RMAC) and Falcon Eye systems,” he said.
“Accordingly, the NN has 9 RMAC sites established at Badagry, Bonny, Naval Base Apapa, Ibaka, Brass, FOB FORMOSO, NHQ as well as the Headquarters of the Eastern and Central Naval Commands.”
The NN is working towards increasing its Falcon Eye system from 9 sites at present to 12 , he added stating that when completed, “these facilities will enable the NN expand its surveillance coverage of Nigerias maritime domain, with more effective check on illegalities.”
On recapitalization of the NN fleet, Ibe – Enwo said it has been a top priority of the Chief of Naval staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ekwe Ibas who had pursued the objective through a double-pronged strategy – acquiring ships from abroad and complementing with local construction of ships and boats.
He maintained that the ongoing operations: TSARE TEKU and RIVER SWEEP are addressing illegalities in the Blue and Brown waters respectively.
While surveillance systems, ships and helicopters are specifically aimed at checking crude oil theft, illegal bunkering, piracy/sea robbery and illegal fishing among others.
According to the programme for the Navy Week events will be carried out in the 5 Commands of the Nigerian Navy.