By Augustine Ehikioya
In its fight against economic sabotage, the Inspector-General of Police, IGP Usman Alkali Baba’s Special Task Force has arrested four suspects for economic sabotage.
The IGP Special Task Force on Petroleum and Illegal Bunkering (IGP-STFPIB), which was set up to monitor, investigate, apprehend, and prosecute economic saboteurs, also impounded oil-laden barge in Port-Harcourt, Rivers State.
In a statement issued on Thursday by the Force Public Relations Officer, Force Headquarters, CSP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, and made available to Security Watch Africa (SWA), the IGP, Usman Alkali Baba, also warned that “there would be severe sanctions for criminal elements who engage in activities such as illegal bunkering and illegal refining of oil products, which is capable of sabotaging the economy of the country.”
According to the statement, the IGP also charged members of the special teams to renew their offensive against crimes and criminality, and professionally shun all manner of corruption so that offenders would be made to face the full wrath of the law.
The IGP spoke while commending the IGP Task Force on the interception of “a seagoing 12-compartments barge known as “Rainbow-I” with Registration No. 8765432 laden with about three hundred and fifty thousand litres of Automotive Gas Oil (AGO) reasonably suspected to be illegally refined, and the arrest of four suspects, by the Inspector-General of Police Special Task Force on Petroleum and Illegal Bunkering (IGP-STFPIB) on 10th June, 2021 at Slaughter Area of Trans Amadi, Port Harcourt.”
Preliminary investigations and analysis carried out on the samples by the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority based in Port Harcourt, the statement noted, confirmed that the product is “adulterated, and therefore unfit for sale to the public.”
The Inspector-General of Police also warned all economic saboteurs to cease forthwith their criminal activities “else the long arm of the law will catch up with them.”
All suspects, the statement said, will be charged to court upon conclusion of investigations.