The Nigerian Navy has said it is concluding plans to establish its bases in Oguta, Imo State, and Shagunu, Niger State, as part of efforts to combat maritime crimes and ensure security of the country’s inland waters.
The Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice-Admiral Ibok Ete-Ibas, stated this in Abuja, noting that these new outposts would complement the existing recently established bases, NNS Lugard in Lokoja, Kogi State as well as in Onitsha and Idah towns.
According to a statement by the Navy Director of Information, Commodore Suleman Dahun, on Sunday, the naval chief stated these while receiving the Managing Director of the Nigerian Export-Import Bank, Mr Abba Bello, at the naval headquarters in Abuja.
Dahun said, “Mr Bello identified the areas of support and cooperation with the navy to include involvement of the Navy Hydrography Department in the proposed survey of the lower River Niger and River Benue.
“Other areas are provision of security support for safe navigation along the trade routes and development of a mutually beneficial partnership framework for the use of the Naval Dockyard Limited for servicing of Sealink-operated vessels. The partnership will include recruitment of retired naval personnel.
“The Chief of the Naval Staff underscored the commitment of the navy to the security of the nation’s waterways following the establishment of NNS Lugard at Lokoja and Naval outposts at Onitsha and Idah.
“The CNS also mentioned the prospects for the establishment of other navy outposts along the nation’s major inland waters, particularly at Oguta and Shagunu in Imo and Niger states respectively.”