Nigerian Army Amphibious Forces patrol in a river gunboat armed with a DShk 12.7mm machine gun

Nigerian Army Amphibious Forces patrol in a river gunboat armed with a DShk 12.7mm machine gun

Fri, Mar 28
YENAGOA, Nigeria (Reuters)

Nigeria has arrested two Britons and 10 of its own citizens on charges of trying to bribe a military officer to facilitate oil theft, the military said on Friday. Oil theft by armed gangs is rampant in Africa’s top crude-producing country, with estimates ranging from 100,000 barrels to 250,000 barrels a day lost to so- called “bunkerers”.

Major-General E.J. Atewe, commander of the mixed military and police Joint Task Force (JTF) for the oil-producing Niger Delta region, said two of the bunkerers, both Nigerian, had gone to an officer to request clearance to move the crude oil. They had openly admitted their plan was to hack into a pipeline and connect a hose that would siphon crude out of it onto a
waiting boat, and offered him $6,500 to provide a gunboat to protect them on the way out.

“The suspects were immediately arrested for attempting to bribe the brigade commander for economic sabotage,”Atewe said in a statement, and a follow-up operation had led to the arrest of two Britons and another eight Nigerians.

Stories of collusion with the security
forces are common and the sheer scale of oil theft in Nigeria would not be possible without systematic collusion by various security agencies, security sources say.

Loss of output from theft and outages
caused by sabotaging pipelines has cost the treasury – which relies on oil for about 80 percent of revenues – billions of dollars. Critics, however, say theft is exaggerated to cover up embezzlement of oil revenues by officials in the state oil firm, a charge they deny.

Oil theft has contributed to the high
likelihood Nigeria will lose its top African crude oil exporter spot in May, as exports could fall to their lowest since records began in 2009.Production of the Forcados grade has
been hit by underwater pipeline leakage, which Shell blamed on oil theft, and which led the operator to declare force majeure on the grade this week.

Despite widespread evidence of collusion between Nigerian security forces, the government has been keen to portray oil theft as the work of foreign criminal gangs. Analysts say the main buyers are gangs in the Balkans and refiners in Singapore.


About beegeagle

BEEG EAGLE -perspectives of an opinionated Nigerian male with a keen interest in Geopolitics, Defence and Strategic Studies
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  1. Obix says:

    Very encouraging action by the brigade commander. A real patriot and hero for resisting the temptation. He should be rewarded accordingly as an encouragement to others who are facing such temptations!

  2. igbi says:

    Do I sense foreign intelligence helping to sabotage Nigerian economy ?

    • Are James says:

      The two Britons are merely hot tap specialists. Let us look inwards and upwards for the people behind this.

      • Are James says:

        An updated and possible more accurate report in the Punch is now describing them as employees of a maritime security company that means mercenaries, spies, hired guns et.c.. This is more serious than we thought and similar things mist have been going on for years. One person in the loop, maybe a new commander has obviously suddenly refused to play ball and has let the cat out of the bag.

  3. jimmy says:
    Fellow bloggers should remember Brig GEN ATEWE well his promotion to commander was covered on this blog.
    Well since ( sarcastically) THE MEMBERS OF THE JTSF have been receiving bribes these British Individuals should be charged let then prove their innocence or their Guilt, if they are convicted special circumstances leading up to life should be handed down perhaps the lovely bbc will cover their trial.SMH.

  4. asorockweb says:

    Well done JTF.

    The picture is still a bit confusing.

    The Britons will most likely get away on legal technicalities.

    The real winners here are the officers that resisted such huge bribes – they will rise to the very top.

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