Chief of Defence Staff, Abayomi Olanisakin, on Saturday, pledged improved capacity for military in the task of
dealing with the problem of pipeline vandalism, kidnapping, cultism and sundry crimes in the Niger Delta region.
He made the pledge in Yenagoa during an operational visit to the headquarters of the Joint Military Force in Niger Delta christened Operation Pulo Sheld.
Olanisakin was accompanied by Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ette Ibas, and conducted round by Commander of Operation Pulo Shield, Maj.-Gen. Alani Okunlola.
Olanisakin said that the visit followed the strategic directive of the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, President Muhammad Buhari to deal with identified security threats in the Niger Delta region.
The defence chief said that the visit was to access the challenges of the troops with a view to addressing them to ensure operational effectiveness in dealing with the threats.
He added that “I am in Yenagoa on operational visit to Operation Pulo Shield as well as the Boat House vessel we have in Akassa.
“It is such that we can understand the challenges they are facing here and address these challenges to enhance their operational effectiveness and efficiency.
“In doing that, we have listened to all that they have said concerning the challenges, we shall go back and address some of these challenges so that they can do their jobs better than they had done in the past.”
On the security challenges in the Niger Delta region, Olanisakin said that following the directive of the president, defence chiefs had identified 10 security threats to the country at the Niger Delta region.
“The President had given a strategic direction, and we must ensure that these directives are carried out; I have come in company of the Chief of Naval Staff to also address some of these issues.
“The issue here is that we have a lot of security threats in this area, they are about 10 to be precise, and we have identified all these areas from illegal oil bunkering to oil theft
“Also, pipeline vandalism, kidnapping and cultism and all the other oil and gas related criminalities.
“We have looked into that and are ensuring that these issues are properly addressed and we have zero tolerance to militancy and other oil and gas criminalities in the region.
“That is what we have been trying to do and we will achieve it.” (NAN)