The Forward Operating Base (FOB) of Nigerian Navy, Badagry on Saturday warned petrol dealers in the town over the smuggling of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) known as petrol to neighbouring countries.
Navy Captain A Adams-Aliu, the Commanding Officer, FOB, NN gave the warning at the stakeholders meeting with the Petroleum Dealers Association Badagry Chapter at the Base office.
According to him, if Federal Government made a decision that petrol that is meant for Nigerian market should be sold in Nigeria, I cannot pretend when someone is carrying it across waterways to neighbouring countries.
“I have to react and ask why they are carrying petrol in Jerry’s can where they get them and where they are taking them to.
“This is where you come in as the petroleum dealers in Badagry.
“As I am, I can’t get petrol here unless I get to filing stations within Badagry.
“So, it is you that Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) supplies petrol and you are the one that can explain how the product gets to all these neighbouring countries.
“The opposite of this is that when they smuggle petrol to neighbouring countries, they will bring rice into the country.
“It is now behold on me to check the boundary, why there is such movement and make the arrest if necessary,” he said.
The Commanding Officer said that smuggling of petroleum products outside the country was having adverse effects on the economy of the nation, urging marketers to shun the practice.
Adams-Aliu said that a story came out online recently that Naval officers were harassing and extorting petrol stations in Badagry communities.
The Commanding Officer said that since resumed office on March 23, Naval personnel had not come out of waterways to filing stations or land to check any smuggling.
He urged the members of the association to check any of his officers and men and pick out any of his men involved in these atrocities.
The Commanding Officer gave out his phone number and urged members of the association to call him anytime they found any of his men or officers in their filing station harassing people.
He said that many dealers or petroleum marketers could not know the difference between Navy, Soldiers or Air Force personnel when they are in camouflage uniform.
The Commanding Officer read the Vision & Mission of the Chief of Naval Staff – Vice Admiral EI Ogalla and stated that these were the guide for all Nigerian Navy operations.
Responding, Alhaji Ganiyu Adelani, the Chairman, PDA, Badagry said there was no time since his arrival that the association had not been having issues with officers and men of the Nigerian Navy.
“There was a time some filing stations had issues with Naval operatives but you have not assumed office then.
“We are very grateful to you for inviting us to this meeting today and we promised to assist you in checking smuggling on waterways,” he said.