Ben Dunno, Warri
Flag Officer Commanding (FOC), Central Naval Command, Rear Admiral Suleiman Garba, has solicited the cooperation of traditional rulers and other relevant stakeholders to combat insecurity in the Niger Delta region.
The naval boss made the appeal at the weekend during his courtesy visits to some royal fathers in Delta state, after commissioning building projects specifically designed to tackle accommodation challenges of officers and men under his command.
Speaking separately at the palace of Ovie of Uvwie kingdom, His Royal Majesty, Dr. Emmanuel Sideso and the Olu of Warri, His Royal Majesty, Ogiame Ikenwoli, the FOC expressed confidence in the traditional institution to play key role in the country’s quest for peace and security.
Rear Admiral Garba noted that the courtesy call on the monarchs had become necessary in line with the directive of Chief of Naval Staff (CNS), Vice Admiral Ibok Ibas, to ensure sustainability of peace and security not just in the state but the entire region.
He disclosed that already, the command had commenced sensitisation tour of coastal settlements to educate youths on the need to ensure that crimes such as kidnapping, pipeline vandalism, illegal bunkering and other social vices were brought to its barest minimum.
According to him “the command is working with the directive of our boss. We are out to seek the cooperation of traditional rulers and other stakeholders to ensure that peace returns to the region for growth and development.”
Responding, both royal fathers assured their support to the Navy to ensure that youths in their domains were well behaved, especially in the area of protecting their communities from being used to perpetrate criminal activities that would dent the image of their land and people.
Earlier, a two-storey building to serve as accommodation for senior rating was commissioned by Rear Admiral Garba, in Effurrun, Uvwie Local Government Area of Delta State.
In his address after the commissioning, the FOC said that the increasing accommodation challenges facing his men and officers prompted the need to embark on the building project.
“The growing rate of crimes in the society today, especially in the maritime sector that still remains the mainstay of the nation’s economy, in terms of revenue, has necessitated the need to recruit and take in additional personnel into the service across board.
“The policy to absorb more personnel comes with its own collateral consequences, one of which is the need for additional accommodation for the personnel that would be taken into the service.
“Accordingly, the Chief Naval Staff in line with his strategic planning objectives has directed that we engaged in continuous construction of buildings to accommodate more rating and officers in the service.”
Other officers on the FOC encourage during the visits included Commander NNS Delta, Commodore Ibrahim Dewu; Command Operations Officer, Commodore R.M Shammah; Commander BMU, Capt, SM Obembe and Commanding Officer, FOB Escravos. Capt. SM Tasiu.