Nigerian Air Force Bolsters Efforts to Combat Oil Theft with New Aircraft Acquisition

by Oluwatosin Racheal Alabi

To address the growing concern of crude oil theft, the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) is set to add two new aircraft to its fleet, tailored specifically for this mission. This initiative aims to shield the country’s vital natural resources and ensure economic resilience.

During a discussion with the House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee – a body delving into oil theft and the federal government’s revenue disparities – AVM Abdul Ganiyu, the NAF’s Director of Operations, unveiled this strategic move. He highlighted the NAF’s holistic approach to combat this burgeoning issue.

Emphasizing readiness, AVM Ganiyu noted the ongoing training of pilots earmarked for these aircraft, aiming for full operational capability by the month’s conclusion. With advanced equipment on board, the NAF expects a substantial boost in its combat against unauthorized bunkering operations.

Stressing collaboration, AVM Ganiyu appealed to tech-adept agencies to promptly relay information on illegal bunkering hotspots to the NAF. He assured swift and decisive action against these perpetrators upon receiving such intel.

Supporting this, the Nigeria Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) committed to sharing timely data on illicit bunkering activities, harnessing their cutting-edge surveillance tools. This solidarity showcases a united front against oil theft.

However, the Nigeria Middle and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Agency (NMDPRA) shed light on a pressing challenge: inconsistencies in oil measurement during production and dispensation, pinpointed as significant factors in oil and revenue leaks.

While Nigeria grapples with crude oil theft, it’s not alone. Countries like Venezuela and Mexico, abundant in natural resources, similarly confront oil theft issues, resulting in hefty revenue and environmental setbacks. Such nations are ramping up investments in tech and intelligence, paralleling Nigeria’s efforts.

In essence, the NAF’s proactive stance reinforces its dedication to protect Nigeria’s assets. Through collaborative inter-agency efforts and leveraging modern technology, Nigeria stands strong in its crusade against crude oil theft.

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