The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Akwa Ibom Command, says it has arrested three suspects, with over 3,000 litres of suspected adulterated Automotive Gas Oil (AGO), known as diesel, concealed in a truck laden with sand.
The Commandant of NSCDC in the state, Mr Samuel Fadeyi, disclosed this while briefing newsmen at the command’s exhibits yard in Uyo, on Friday.
Fadeyi said that the suspects, who claimed they were coming from Ahoada, Rivers, were nabbed on March 2, at the border town between Akwa Ibom and Rivers.
He said that since criminals were devising more innovative ideas, there was the need for security personnel, especially those at the border posts, to be extra vigilant, in order to tackle crime and criminality in the state and the country at large.
“I am constrained to come before you, as we have always promised to carry you along, so that you put our information in the public domain.
“This is an exhibition of people trying to smuggle illegally-refined diesel. You can see that they tried to conceal it in sand.
“It was an open truck and ordinarily when you see it, you think they are conveying sand. But due to the vigilance of my men at the border post, they were able to intercept the truck.
“For now, we can only ascertain that it is diesel; we don’t know what is inside; it is still undergoing investigation. But, I have to sound a note of warning to the people that they cannot continue to sabotage our economy.
“Illegally-refined oil are products of oil theft and this must not be allowed to continue. Even the degradation that it does to the economy is unbearable and it is a problem for the country.
“It is very unfortunate that a truck you assumed is loaded with sand, only for you to find out that there is something inside. You never can tell, that there might be arms and ammunitions in there,” Fadeyi said.
The commandant added that all the three suspects would be charged to court as soon as investigation was completed.
Fadeyi called on security personnel, especially those at the border posts, to be more vigilant and be at alert to contain the antics of criminals, so that Akwa Ibom and Nigeria would be safe.
He called on members of the public to volunteer information to security agencies concerning crimes and criminalities within their areas, to ensure adequate protection of critical infrastructure.