Vandalism: Aiteo Group Donates 50 gunboats, Drones to Navy
Aiteo Group, an indigenous oil and gas company, has donated 50 assault gunboats and drones to the Nigerian Navy, in a bid to stem the tide of frequent attacks on oil and gas facilities by vandals.
The military equipment handed over by the oil firm to the Navy in Port Harcourt include, 21 gunboats, 14 operational patrol boats, four high-speed interception inshore patrol boats.
Others are, seven houseboats, four airboats, four high-speed interception inshore patrol boats, long-range surveillance drones and six high definition cameras.
Handing over the equipment to the Navy, Chief Executive Officer of Aiteo Group, Mr Benedict Peters, said the donation became necessary, due to constant attacks on its Nembe Creek Trunkline (NCTL) and other critical oil and gas assets by vandals.
“We know that the Nigerian Navy stands in the best position to address this menace if adequately equipped and supported.
“Consequently, Aiteo resolved to maximally lend its hands of fellowship by handing over these operational support equipment to enable the navy to secure the waterways and facilities,” Peters said.
Receiving the hardwares, the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Awwal Gambo, assured that the boats and the drones would be deployed to secure the Niger Delta creeks, in the fight against oil theft, sea piracy and vandalism.
Gambo commended the management of Aiteo Group for the donations and appealed for the support of other corporate entities, to enable the Navy to deploy more gunboats in securing facilities like the Nembe Creek Trunkline, operated by Aiteo.
He said, “The delivery of these platforms and assets aligns with the provisions of the Nigerian Navy 2021-2030 strategic plans on inter-agency and sub-regional cooperation.
‘This is a milestone in our collaborative engagement with corporate maritime stakeholders to rid the nation’s maritime environment of criminal elements and economic saboteurs.
“To this end, these platforms will enhance the navy maritime security architecture and bolster our maritime security operations effort.”