Navy Begin Mop-Up Operations At Arepo, Other Creeks
The military, through its joint operation, code-named Operation Awatse, has begun a mop-up operation of the Arepo, Ishawo and Elepete creeks in Lagos and Ogun states, after the aerial bombardment that took place three months ago.
As at Saturday, 53,000 empty 50 litres jerry-cans capacity, which were on the verge of being filled with the siphoned products, before the aerial bombardment, were recovered from the creeks.
Flag Officer Commanding, FOC Western Naval Command of the Nigerian Navy and the Chairman, Operation Awatse, Rear Admiral Ferguson Bobai, who visited the Ishawo creeks at the weekend, to monitor the mop-up operation, revealed that several arrests were also made in the process.
Bobai informed that the suspects were subsequently handed over to the Department of the State Service, DSS, for prosecution. He was, however, quick to inform that the operation was made possible with the support of the Lagos State government, to clear the creeks.
On the possible return of the militants-turned kidnappers, to the creeks and other areas where abducted persons were kept, Bobai stated that the military was still awaiting directive to also carry out similar aerial bombardments of new hideouts such as Ijagemo, Ijegun and Isheri areas of Lagos and Ogun states Bobai said; “We are aware that the militants are returning and we are ready to take them on.
Very soon, petroleum products will be pumped from Atlas Cove to Mosimi. That will pose new challenge for us because when we embarked on this operation, petroleum products were not being pumped and some of them who were out of business started kidnapping.
We will come massively to ensure these miscreants are kept at bay. “As a military officer, I was instructed by the Chief of Defence Staff to remove the shanties and dislodge the miscreants, which we have done and handed over to LASEMA.” He disclosed that the military had made recommendations to the Federal Government to assign the appropriate agency to deal with owners of petrol stations who patronised vandals.
Also at the spot, was the General Manager, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, LASEMA Mr Adeniyi Tiamiyu, who applauded the military over what he described as professional manner it which it carried out the aerial bombardments, without any loss of life.
Tiamiyu said that there were several other jerry-cans inside the creeks, adding that those recovered would be recycled.