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Nigerian Army unveils underground crude oil wells in crackdown on oil theft

Troops' Discovery Sheds Light on New Tactic Used by Oil Thieves in Rivers State

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In a significant development in the fight against illegal oil bunkering, Nigerian Army troops from the 6th Division, Port Harcourt, made a startling find on Wednesday, uncovering a network of more than 40 clandestine crude oil wells in the Rumuekpe community of Emohua Local Government Area, Rivers State.

Led by Major General Jamal Abdussalam, the General Officer Commanding 6 Division, the operation revealed a sophisticated method employed by criminals to siphon crude oil from the Trans-Niger Delta Pipeline. The wells, some reaching depths of 40 feet, represent a new dimension in the battle against oil theft in the Niger Delta region.

Addressing reporters after the operation, Abdussalam described the discovery as unprecedented, shedding light on the lengths to which perpetrators would go to exploit oil resources illicitly. He emphasized the danger posed by the operation, both to the environment and to the individuals involved, noting the risk of suffocation from gas emissions and the peril of collapsing wells.

Expressing concern over the scale of the operation, Abdussalam pledged to take immediate action to curtail further illegal activities at the site. He affirmed plans to engage relevant authorities and deploy troops to prevent unauthorized access to the area, emphasizing the need to safeguard both the environment and unsuspecting individuals who might stumble upon the hazardous terrain.

Furthermore, the Army disclosed that several suspects linked to the operation were apprehended and are currently under investigation. One of the detainees confessed to the crime, revealing the perilous conditions under which the illegal excavation took place. The suspect highlighted the community ownership of the wells and the grave risks involved in extracting crude oil through the hazardous process.

As investigations continue, the discovery of the underground oil wells underscores the ongoing struggle against organized crime and illicit resource extraction in Nigeria’s oil-rich Niger Delta. The Nigerian Army’s vigilance and resolve in addressing these challenges reflect a concerted effort to protect national resources and uphold the rule of law in the region.

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