BY GABRIEL OKECHUKWU, PORT HARCOURT
Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, Rivers State Command, has reiterated the determination to end illegal oil bunkering in the State.
The Commandant, NSCDC, Rivers State Command, Abu Tambuwal, who made this known during the activities marking Civil Defence Day, at the Marine Exhibit Jetty in Ogbogoro, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, decried the environmental degradation pipeline vandalism has caused.
World Civil Defence Day was declared as a global holiday by the International Civil Defence Organization (ICDO) in 1990 and honours the significance of Civil Defence and the personnel who have sacrificed their lives for it.
To this end the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps has been effective in the protection of critical National assets and the fight against oil theft in the country.
Speaking at the event to mark the celebration this year, the Commandant Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Rivers State Command, Abu Tambuwal who was emphatic of the determination of the command to stop pipeline vandalism and all forms of oil theft in the State, observed with displeasure the negative effects of bunkering activities on the aquatic life and farm lands.
Commandant Tambuwal who was represented by Deputy Commandant Ethel Dike, noted the importance of legislation for the benefit of volunteers during emergency situations.
“The protection of lives during disasters be it man made or Natural and the provision of peaceful atmosphere for citizens to engage in lawful business is the goal of every good governance.”
“In marking this year’s World Civil Defence Day, the Rivers State Command of NSCDC has intensified its fight against vandals of the nation assets by arresting not fewer than fifty suspected oil thieves.”
Similarly, the National President National Association of Surface Tank Oil and Gas Retailers of Nigeria, (NASTOGRN) Professor Onyeche Obinna, described oil theft as a sabotage of the Nation’s economy.
Professor Obinna who is also a traditional ruler, promised to mobilize the traditional institution and the youths to uncover illegal refineries within their domain.
“We are calling on all traditional rulers devoid of political sentiment and all youth leaders and CDC Chairmen in Rivers State to stand up and defend their territory.”
“The aquatic life is gone; the ecosystem has been so depleted.
I want to wish you well and to send our goodwill message to all the Nations of the world, marking World Civil Defence Day.”
“ I congratulate Nigeria Security Civil Defence Corps.”
In his presentation, the South South zonal Coordinator, National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, Godwin Tepikor, who was represented by Mr. Fortunatus Anyanwu, applauded NSCDC for leading the fight against oil theft in the State and pledged to assist the Corp in managing crisis situations.
“NEMA is also doing their part.”
“We are asking the NSCDC and other critical stakeholders for more and effective collaboration in disaster management.”
The NEMA official acknowledged that the Governor of Rivers State has made concerted effort to stop illegal oil bunkering in the State.
The focus of this year’s remembrance is Civil Defence and Management of Displaced Population in the Face of Disasters and Crisis, Role of Volunteers and the Fight against Pandemic.
High point of the event was a simulation of fire fighting emergency by a combined team of NSCDC, NEMA and Nigerian Red Cross society.