Oil thieves seeking Defence chief sacking, CSO alleges


An environment protection coalition, Our Habitat, has thrown its weight behind the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Lucky Irabor, over the destruction of an illegal oil bunkering vessel.

The PUNCH had reported how the CDS had defended the destruction of the vessel, saying there was nothing sinister about the swift destruction of an oil bunkering vessel by security operatives.

Defending the destruction of the vessels, Irabor had said, “So, the burning of the vessel, it is because the thief was caught in the act and the procedure, if you are caught in the act, is that everything you are using to undertake that criminal activity should be destroyed and that was done.

“What investigation do you need that you find somebody who decided to deplore several pumping machines and has several hoses that are deployed to a dugout pit where crude oil is stored over a period ?”.

But the environment coalition in a press release on Wednesday in Abuja condemned the call for the sack of the CDS, saying at no other time in the history of Nigeria has the Armed Forces shown strong determination and courage to tackle oil Bunkering.

The coalition said oil thieves have caused terrible environmental damage to oil-producing areas, hence decisive actions against them are justified.

“They are causing the country economic sabotage and same time environmental degradation in oil-producing areas.

The coalition in a press release by the Convener, Davidson Wariboko said, “Calling for the sack of the CDS shows the oil thieves are fighting back. They are hiding behind the law to condemn the destruction of the vessel, while at the same time causing serious environmental degradation in the cause of their criminal activities.

“Since assumption of office as the CDS, Gen. Irabor has met stakeholders in the oil sector, security, traditional rulers and others in a bid to tackle the stealing of our commonwealth.

“At no time in the history of Nigeria like now, has the leadership of the Armed Forces shown determination and courage to face the economic saboteurs headlong. It seems they are now fighting back.

The coalition urged residents of the oil-producing areas and other stakeholders to cooperate with the military to tackle the criminals and make their environment better.

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