Oil theft on the rise in the Niger Delta.

Governor Dickson of Bayelsa has said that oil theft is a threat to national security and responsible for the proliferation of arms in the Niger Delta.

Niger Delta militants steal crude oil to buy arms, recruit members, Bayelsa Governor says

Oil theft and vandalism has been on the rise in the Niger Delta.

Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa has said that oil theft is a threat to national security and responsible for the proliferation of arms in the Niger Delta. He said militants who engage in oil theft use it to finance their operations, recruit members, and buy arms and ammunition.

Mr. Dickson said this in Yenagoa on Friday when he received the new Flag Officer Commanding (FOC) Central Naval Command, Yenagoa, Rear Admiral Sidi-Ali Usman.

The governor expressed concern about the rising incidents and sophistication of illegal bunkering, sea piracy and pipeline vandalism and condemned the negative impact of the crimes on the nation’s economy. He said the criminals sustained their operations over the years through the proceeds from illegal bunkering activities.

”What is going on is more of a threat to national security than even the loss of revenue that everybody is shouting about,” Mr. Dickson said.

”Let me tell you that all the violence, brigandage and criminality that we experience in the Niger Delta states, particularly Bayelsa where I know more, have their roots in the activities in the creeks.

”It is from there they have easy funds to recruit followers; it is from these activities of crude oil theft and illegal refining that people are able to sustain such large numbers of youths and put them into various cult groups.

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Source: Premium Times.

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