The Joint Task Force (JTF), Operation Delta Safe, in line with the directive of the Defence Headquarters, has commenced Operation Octopus Grip to rid the Niger Delta region of crude oil thieves.
The Chief of Defence Staff, General Lucky Irabor, who flagged-off the operation at Opu Nembe NDDC Jetty in Nembe Local Government Area of Bayelsa State, said the operation is to fulfil one of its constitutional amendments by checkmating illegal activities in the Niger Delta region.
According to him, operation Octopus Grip would help to neutralise all the security threats causing problems from Nigeria.
Irabor, who was represented by Maj. Gen. M.A Yekini, Chief of Defence Training and Operation, disclosed that the Defence Headquarters is conducting several operations across Nigeria to tackle insecurity.
“I came up with a vision which is to foster professional armed forces capable of effectively meeting constitutional imperatives.
“So far, the DHQ is currently conducting several operations aimed at addressing identified security threats across the various geo-political zones in Nigeria.
“These operations are Operation WHIRL STROKE in the North Central, HADARIN DAJI in the North West, SAFE HAVEN in the North Central, AWATSE in the South West, HADIN KAI in the North East and DELTA SAFE in the South South.
“Operation Delta Safe is peculiar and was established in the Niger Delta to curb crude oil theft and other illegal activities in the region.
“Accordingly, the JTF Operation Delta Safe was mandated to protect oil and gas infrastructures, deter and prevent militancy, sea robbery, crude oil theft and other forms of criminality within the joint operations area that could impact negatively on economic activities in the region.
“In achieving its mandate, JTF Operation Delta Safe has conducted several kinetic and non-kinetic operations which have yielded positive results in checkmating crude oil theft and illegal oil refineries in Niger Delta.
“Operations conducted by the JTF Operation Delta Safe include Operations ACCORD I and ACCORD II amongst others.
“This has contributed in no small measure to secure our oil and gas infrastructures towards maintaining a steady oil production quota from the region.
“These operations have also yielded positive results in curtailing activities of pipeline vandals, kidnapping, sea piracy, communal violence and other criminal activities in the region.
“Notwithstanding the numerous achievements, there is need to build on successes achieved so far and persevere in the face of emerging security threats through the conduct of fresh operations such as Operation Octopus Grip,” he said
The Commander JTF, Operation Delta Safe, Rear Adm. Aminu Hassan, said the operation is aimed at creating safe and secure environment for NNPC oil and gas exploration activities within the OPDS.
According to him the aim of the operation is to reinforce successes achieved with Operation Accord two as well as all other operations conducted by services and other security agencies to improve own operational efforts.