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OPERATIONS AWATSE, KUROMBE send strong signal to pipeline vandals with Atlas Cove’s raid



The Flag Officer Commanding (FOC) Western Naval Command ( WNC)  on Tuesday through OPERATIONS AWATSE and KUROMBE raided the Atlas Cove and warned  those involved in  pipeline vandalism to stop it.


The FOC, Rear Adm. Oladele Daji , was also  the Force Commander of  OPERATION AWATSE


He said that the operation was specifically to combat the scourge of pipeline vandalism and oil thefts within Lagos State “>Lagos State  and parts of Ogun.


“This folowed  reports from  the NNPC)”>Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC)) that its pipelines had been bridged and it was  suffering losses of petroleum products worth billions of naira.


“The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Gen. Abayomi Olonisakin, directed OPERATION AWATSE
which is an internal security operation covering Lagos State “>Lagos State   and parts of Ogun specifically to combat the scourge.”


Daji said that the CDS directed the command to stop  pipeline vandalism and oil thefts within the two states.


He also said that the WNC should end  other criminalities such as  kidnappings and cultism,adding that personnel from the command had  been on the execise for more than  a week.


The FOC alongside Maj.-Gen. Olubunmi Irefin, the General Officer Commanding (GOC)), 81Division  of the Nigeria Army, led their officers to storm  Atlas Cove.


They were joined by Air Force
“>Air Vice Marshal (AVM), Abdulganiyu Olabisi, the Air Officer Commanding (AOC), Logistics Command, Air Force
base, Ikeja and other commanders.


The senior officers were at the scene for an on-the-spot assessment.


“We are here for an on-the-spot-assessment with the GOC of 81 Division and AOC of Logistics Command.


“So that we will be able to give the CDS a feedback on what we had seen and done so far, ” Daji said.


He said that the Operation had recovered over 300,000 empty jerrycans and not less than 30,000 jerrycans filled with stolen petroleum products.


This Operation is not  going to be limited to  Atlas Cove, it will be extended to the  NNPC depot at Mosimi, ” he said.

Daji said that the Operation with the code name’OPERATION KUROMBE’”>OPERATION KUROMBE’’ was there to  warn the vandals and those backing them to desist from it.


Daji said that  there was no hiding place for them.


OPERATION KUROMBE’”>OPERATION KUROMBE’ is the code name for the operation, it is a very strong message and signal for those that are backing the vandals to desist from it because they have no hiding place any longer.


“The masqueraders have been unmasked, we are going to stop them from getting it from the source and deny them the capacity to even move or transport this product to end buyers.


“So, the end buyers will be of no consequences if the products are not available, ” he said.


He said that the the Operation had the backings of the Federal Government, saying that the resolve of the Federal Government was to ensure full control of every inch of the territory.


“There is a new resolve and has been backed up by an  order from Gen. Olonisakin to ensure that every illegal structure, every illegal settlement that is causing encumbrance to  fuel distribution is removed and we are undaunting.


“And we will go the whole hoax and make sure that the political will backing that we have received is actualised, ” he said.


He also  said that a Nigerien was  arrested during the operation, saying that his matter was being investigated.


He said that the foreigner  would be handed over to the Immigration Service (NIS)”>Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS)) after the command would have concluded its  investigation.


“We are liaising with the NIS because just as we were coming, we accosted and arrested a Nigerien and is being processed.


“He  will be handed over to the Immigration Service.


“We carried them along at the launch of the Operation, specially during the coordinating conference on Dec.4, alongside the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC)).


“We are all together to ensure that these pipelines are protected and sanitised, ” he said.


The Nigeria News Agency reports that no less than  115 illegal structures were destroyed at different communities in Atlas Cove.


Also, during the raid, devices which included fabricated pipes and multiple hoses connected to the NNPC pipelines to illegally siphon petrol were discovered in 68 points  and were subsequently dismantled.

Edited by: Peter Dada

Some of the Jerrycans discovered during OPERATION AWATSE

Top military brass from  the Navy, the Army and the Air Force


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Oremule Modupe: is a graduate and a professionally trained journalist, with experience in national news reporting/editing and verification at the News Agency of Nigeria. NNN is a Nigerian online news portal that publishes breaking news in Nigeria, and across the world. Our journalists are honest, fair, accurate, thorough and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting news in the best interest of the public, because truth is the cornerstone of journalism and they strive diligently to ascertain the truth in every news report. Contact: editor[at]