Navy admiral found dead in his home in Lagos

Teikumo Ikoli, fleet commander of the Western Naval Command, Nigerian Navy, was found dead in his Lagos home, on Wednesday.

Chinwe Umar, spokeswoman for the Western Naval Command, said the cause of Ikoli’s death had not been known, but investigation was going on.

“In the early hours of Wednesday April 5, 2017, gunshots were heard in the vicinity where Rear Admiral Teikumo Daniel Ikoli resides in Apapa, Lagos,” she said in a statement.

“When his room was opened, he was found dead.”

He said the police had been invited for investigation into how the naval chief died, adding that more “updates would be given when the situation is clearer.’’

Ikoli, a rear admiral, was commander, Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS) BEECROFT and later appointed into the presidential committee on the probe of arms deal before he became fleet commander, Western Naval command.


Source: The Cable

Nigerian Navy deploy warships, helicopter for multinational military exercise.

The Nigerian Navy on Thursday deployed three warships and a helicopter in a joint multinational maritime exercise comprising 29 foreign Navies.

James Oluwole, rear admiral and commander, Task Group 17.1, flagged-off the exercise tagged: “Obangame Express 2017” in Onne, Eleme Local Government Area of Rivers.

Mr. Oluwole said the exercise was aimed at promoting inter-agency and transnational cooperation on maritime safety and security, especially in the Gulf of Guinea.

According to him, the exercise, which would commence on March 24 and end on March 28, would be conducted in Nigeria’s territorial waterways.

“Exercise Obangame Express is a multinational maritime exercise sponsored by the United States Africa Command that brings together African, European, South American and U.S. forces, as part of a global network of Navies.

“The purpose of the exercise is to test multinational maritime forces in a broad range of naval operations to deter piracy, illicit trafficking and other maritime threats.

“The exercise will also involve land-based maritime operation centres throughout the region to improve their level of interoperability and coordination.

“Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS) Okpabana, NNS Centenary, NNS Sagbama and one helicopter will be participating in the exercise designed to promote regional cooperation between Navies in the Gulf of Guinea,” he said.

Mr. Oluwole, also the Flag Officer, Commanding Eastern Naval Command, said the three Nigerian warships and helicopter would sail alongside French Navy ship, Jacoubet, from Cameroon into Nigerian territorial waters.

He listed some of the countries that would participate in the exercise to include Angola, Belgium, Benin, Cape Verde, Cameroon, Cote d’Ívoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Denmark and Equatorial Guinea.

Others are: France, Gabon, Germany, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Norway, Mauritania, Portugal, Republic of Congo, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal and Sierra Leone.

Also participating are: Spain, South Africa, Togo, Turkey, the Netherlands, and the United States of America.

“The exercise will be conducted along with regional organisations such as the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS).

“The ships will perform several exercises with intent to create realistic scenarios that reflect past piracy incidents whereby a hijacked vessel will transit from one territory to another.

“Additionally, the exercise will test each individual maritime force to patrol their exclusive economic zones, detect and prosecute illegal activity accordingly,” he said.


Source: NAN

Nigerian Navy rescues Russian, Ukrainian sailors from pirates

Seven Russian sailors and one Ukrainian national who were kidnapped last month off the coast of Nigeria have been freed, the Nigerian navy said on Monday.

“The foreign sailors, including seven Russians and one Ukrainian, have been rescued. They were rescued by our operatives in Delta state,” Navy spokesman Captain Suleman Dahun told AFP.

He said the sailors were released “unhurt and they are back in their countries”.

It was not immediately clear if ransom money was paid before they were released.

The sailors were taken hostage on February 5 after their cargo vessel, the BBC Caribbean, was attacked by sea pirates off the coast of the volatile Niger delta region.

Three people, who remained on board, managed to run away from the pirates and took the vessel to Spain’s Las Palmas, before returning to Russia.

The BBC Caribbean belongs to German company Briese Schiffahrt and is a multipurpose vessel intended for dry cargo. It flies the flag of Antigua and Barbuda, according to the company’s website.

Ship hijackings have become more frequent in Nigeria since President Muhammadu Buhari in 2015 announced he was winding down an amnesty to former militants in the oil-rich Niger delta region.

The number of pirate attacks off Nigeria rose from 14 in 2015 to 36 last year, according to the International Maritime Bureau.

The Nigerian Navy set to establish War College

The Naval Council has approved the establishment of a Naval War College in Akwa Ibom, the Minister of Defence, Mansur Dan-Ali, has said.

Mr. Dan-Ali, a retired brigadier general, made the disclosure on Sunday at the opening ceremony of the 11th Nigerian Navy Games, tagged, “Uyo 2017”, holding at Godswill Akpabio International stadium, Uyo.

The minister, who was a special guest of honour at the event, said the approval was given based on a request by Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom.

He said that the games would enhance the physical and mental development of the Nigerian armed forces.

“There is no contention that our officers and ratings must maintain physical fitness for operational efficiency.

“Thus service members who are in peak physical condition can contribute more to their teams than members who are in poor physical condition,” the minister said.

He urged the contingents to exhibit the spirit of sportsmanship to justify their participation, investment, coaching and mentoring.

Earlier, the Chief of Naval Staff, Ibok-Ette Ibas, said the naval games had been a profitable investment for the force over the years.

Mr. Ibas, a vice admiral, said the naval games were part of the physical fitness regime instituted in the Navy to impact directly on professionalism in the case of small arms firing.

“The objective of the games is hinged on improving the mental and physical wellbeing of personnel for greater operational effectiveness.

“It is indeed the rationale behind the hosting of this year‘s edition of Nigerian Navy games in the face of resource constraint,” Mr. Ibas said.

He said the games would produce future athletes to represent the Nigerian Navy in Armed Forces Games.

He urged the contingents to ensure that they competed unaided by any stimulant and to engage in fair-play and healthy rivalry in their quest for laurels.

Mr. Ibas commended the Akwa Ibom Government for its support toward the hosting the games.

In his remark, Governor Emmanuel commended the Armed Forces for their efforts in internal security, which had helped in the achievement of peace and tranquility in the country.

The governor acknowledged the armed forces for the manner they handled the Boko Haram crisis in the northeast.

The games will feature 17 sports in seven centres in Uyo.

The Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai, and the Chief of Air Staff, Abubakar Sadiq, also attended the opening ceremony.


Source: NAN

The Nigerian Navy Vows To Rid Niger-Delta Of Criminal Elements.

The Nigerian Navy has vowed to intensify its ‘Operation River Sweep’ in the Niger Delta, in order to rid the region of criminal elements within the maritime environment.

The Flag Officer Commanding, Central Naval Command, Rear Admiral Mohammed Garba, stated this  during the command’s medical outreach to Okunbiri community in Sagbama Local Government Area of the state.

Garba said, ”The Operation River Sweep taking place in the region has been a success. The idea of introducing the ORS 1 and 2; one in the Eastern Naval Command and another in the Central Naval Command, is to keep pressure on the criminal elements within the maritime environment.

”Through this operation, the Nigerian Navy will be able to contain the nefarious activities of criminals in the area adequately.”

On sea piracy, the FOC said that apart from few isolated cases, the Navy and other sister security organisations had successfully minimised their criminal activities.

”Sea piracy has never been rampant. I will say we are doing our best to ensure that we keep the waterways safe for legitimate activities to take place,” he stated.

Declaring the medical exercise open at Okunbiri, Garba said the programme is part of the command’s corporate social responsibility to her host communities, which is the nineth edition.

He said the focus of the programme had been shifted to riverine communities and non-motorable villages who did not have access to good medical services.

The FOC called on the rural dwellers to reciprocate the Navy’s gesture by providing useful information that could help security operatives combat crimes, especially in the maritime domains.
Commenting on the gesture, an indigene of the community and former Acting Governor of Bayelsa State, Mr. Nestor Binabo, commended the Navy for its gesture.

He confessed that the free medical outreach was the first of its kind in the community, saying that the command came at the right time when many residents found it difficult to access medical care because of poverty.

The former acting governor commended the establishment of the command and the Navy as a whole.


Source: Channels TV

Buhari commissions warships in Lagos as army promotes 227 officers

President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday in Lagos said the Federal Government would continue to support and equip the military, while urging ingenuity in complementing his administration’s efforts to construct and improvise some vital operational tools.

At the commissioning of three warships, Unity, Karaduwa and Commander Edwin Ugwu, the president commended the Navy for building two of them.

He said: ‘’It is most fulfilling to note that our own engineers at the Nigerian Navy Dockyard, Lagos and the Naval Shipyard, Port Harcourt are wholly responsible for the building of the Seaward Defence Boat, Nigerian Navy Ship Karaduwa and the tugboat Commander Edwin Ugwu.

He commended the Navy’s strides in the area of continued fight against maritime security threats like piracy, oil theft, illegal bunkering, pipeline vandalism and support for the fight against terrorism in the North East.

The President said the healthy and growing diplomatic relations with China had been most beneficial to Nigeria, recalling that the Chinese government had earlier donated an offshore patrol boat to the navy last year.

In another development, the Chief of Army Staff has said troops have made decisive advancement into the Sambisa forest.
While decorating some newly promoted senior officers, he said that definite and “drastic changes” has helped the troops make appreciable progress into the hideouts of the insurgents.

He said the presidential support for the Army so far in the fight against insurgency was invaluable and was largely responsible for the successes recorded by troops in the fight against the Boko Haram terrorists in the North East and other operations.

Out of the 227 promoted officers, 21 rose from Brigadier-General to Major-General, and 93 from Colonels to Brigadier Generals, among whom was the Director of Army Public Relations, Sani Usman.

Others are 113 Lieutenant-Colonels also moved to Colonel.

Nigerian Navy plans fresh strategies to counter militancy

The Nigerian Navy has formulated fresh strategies to flush out militants from the Niger Delta region and end ongoing attacks on oil installations.

It was gathered that the strategies when fully implemented would enable the navy through their formations in the region to gather intelligence on planned attacks and stop their execution.

The Chief of Naval Staff, Vice-Admiral, Ibok-Ete Ibas, and his team of senior officers were in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, Monday, to tour formations of the Central Naval Command (CNC) in preparation to roll out the new order.

Ibas in company with the Flag Officer Commanding (FOC), CNC, Rear Admiral Mohammed Garba and unit commanders of CNC assessed military hardwares and the readiness of the command to tackle security challenges in its Areas of Responsibility (AoR).

Ibas spent time to evaluate equipment at the Nigerian Naval Ship (NNS) SOROH; naval gunboats at the Government House jetty and later received briefs on challenges facing the CNC.

He further went to the Brass Island where he was conducted round the naval installations at a major command base of the CNC, the Forward Operational Base, FORMOSO.

Ibas, who paid a courtesy visit to the state Governor, Mr. Seriake Dickson, said the tour was aimed at getting all the formations in the region ready to professionally and effectively key into the strategies of riding the region of criminally and militancy.

As part of the fresh strategies he said the navy identified all the flash points in the region and was creating mobile stations to stop illegal activities of criminals and militants.

He said more areas had been identified along the waterways for the establishment of checkpoints and naval security posts.

He said: “The Navy came into the state about five years ago. I am also aware that the presence of the Navy has changed the maritime security landscape of the state and indeed the Niger Delta area in fighting maritime crime which is of concern to all well-meaning Nigerians.

“I want to assure you that the Nigerian Navy together with our sister security agencies will do all within our powers to ensure that we create an enabling environment that will allow for legitimate use of maritime space.

“I wish to use this forum to commend the state for its logistics support to the Navy. We have expanded our bases and units now to create mobile stations which enable us to be closer to the people and to tackle maritime crimes. We are also in the process of creating additional checkpoints to cover flash points in the region.”

Ibas said he was able to appraise and evaluate the security architecture on ground adding that the Navy had enhanced its operational capacity by acquiring more gunboats that had been allocated to various units.

He also said that the Navy had been able to put in place, infrastructure to support its operations in various bases and units.

He said the navy conducted training both locally and abroad to prepare the personnel to be able to man the various equipment in place.

He said: “We are hoping that when we put all these together, the Navy is going to be more proactive in delivery of services and with the various exercises we are conducting, we will be able to rid Bayelsa State and the maritime environment of the criminal elements in the region”.

He commended Dickson, who was represented by his Deputy, Rear Admiral John Jonah (retd) for his support to the CNC and congratulated him on his electoral victory at the Supreme Court.

He disclosed that the governor provided 100 hectares of land for the navy to build a permanent site for NNS SOROH.

Ibas further said the navy was planning to establish its welfare school in the state to contribute to learning and strengthen military-civilian relationship in the state.

But the naval chief appealed to the governor and other governors in the region to play their roles in ensuring peace in the Niger Delta region.

Addressing the governor, he said: “The responsibility lies on those of you in government and security agencies.

“While we commend you for your support, we are also asking you to appeal to Bayelsans to maintain the peace. Tell your people that development cannot come without security”.

Responding, Dickson said his government was always determined to rid the state of criminal elements.

He said his government was anchored on zero tolerance for crime and criminality.

He said: “For Bayelsa State to be secured, the waterways must be secured. That does not mean that we will leave the land. We know that people go to river to harvest for land use.

“But the area of harvest is where the contest is now and the national establishment that has the responsibility, resources and training to do that for the country is the Navy.

“So, the Nigerian Navy needs the encouragement from all of us to ensure that the riverside areas and maritime environment are safe.

“If we continue to collaborate more with sister security services, consistent with availability of logistics to carry out operations, we are going to have a very peaceful Christmas. Again, even after Christmas, we are going to sustain operations.”

He appealed to the Naval authorities to create more of those mobile stations in the state, insisting that Bayelsa is “more riverine than Rivers State and more delta than Delta State”.

Dickson said that his belief was hinged on the fact that if the security agencies and the relevant authorities continued in the same spirit, the state and the region would be rid of criminals.

2, 850 successful applicants set to be recruited into the Nigerian Navy.

Two thousand, eight hundred and fifty (2,850) candidates out of the number that applied to enlist in the Nigerian Navy are successful in the exercise.

This was the update released by the Nigerian Navy through its director of Information, DINFO, Commodore Christian Ezekobe, Wednesday, in Abuja.

Ezekobe, however, said that the successful candidates would be trained in two batches, Batch A and Batch B respectively.

He said while successful candidates in the first batch would commence training on November 6, those in BatchB would have to wait about seven months to commence training on May 21, 2017.

Candidates who participated in the final selection interview were advised to log on to Nigerian Navy recruitment portal immediately to check their results and other requirements for their training at the Nigerian Navy Basic Training School, Onne, Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

Nigerian Navy Acquires New Vessel From China

Nigerian Navy Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV) NNS UNITY which was under construction in China has been completed and on her way to join the Nigerian Navy fleet. At the Handing over and departure ceremony in China, the Chief of the Naval Staff represented by the Chief of Policy and Plans Rear Admiral Jacob Ajani conveyed the appreciation of the Navy to the Commander in-Chief, President Muhammadu Buhari, for approving all steps taken towards the departure of NNS UNITY.

He stated that NNS UNITY upon joining the NN fleet would strengthen the efforts against all maritime crimes and illegalities in the nation’s territorial waters and the Gulf of Guinea in general.

He also added that areas hitherto that were unable to be covered by other NN ships will now be covered by NNS UNITY which will no doubt enhance the NN’s effectiveness and responsiveness to the maritime security challenges within Nigeria’s waters.

NNS UNITY enroute Nigeria will pay ‘port calls’ on some ports of friendly nations before arriving Nigeria.This will further boost the existing cordial relationship with sister navies around the world and the Gulf of Guinea in particular.

He concluded by soliciting the maintenance and improved cooperation between Nigeria and the respective China Ship building corporations further beyond the departure of NNS UNITY.

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Nigerian Navy Rescues British-flagged Vessel From Pirates

The Nigerian Navy yesterday said its Ship Nwamba has rescued a British-flagged cargo ship with call sign MT Vectis Osprey from sea pirates who attacked her 20 nautical miles offshore of Bonny.

A statement from Navy spokesman, Commodore Chris Ezekobe said the rescue operation was in response to a timely alert by the International Maritime Bureau (IMB) to the Naval Regional Maritime Awareness Centre (RMAC).

He said: “the war ship was promptly deployed to track down and rescue the vessel. The British flagged MT Vectis Osprey departed Bonny offshore terminal and came under pirate attack on Wednesday 17   August 2016. “

He added that NNS Nwamba engaged the attackers on approaching the vessel which made them to abandon their mission due to superior fire power.

He also said, Naval special forces onboard the war ship embarked and rescued the crew who locked up themselves in a citadel in the merchant tanker.

Ezekobe said the crew and cargo of MT Vectis Osprey are safe while investigation has also commenced in order to unravel the circumstances of the attempted hijack, especially with regard to the current trend of involvement of crew members in attacks on their own vessels.

He also said the Ship owners are hereby advised to profile their crew before embarking them onboard to avoid situations in which some disgruntled crew members stage-manage attacks on their own vessels.

Credit: dailytrust

“Illegal” Land Acquisition Leads To A Face-off Between Delta Indigenes And The Nigerian Navy

Scores of Oghara indigenes in Delta State yesterday blocked the Warri-Sapele highway protesting against what they described as forceful and illegal acquisition of their land by the Nigerian Navy Logistic Command, Oghara, Delta State.


The protesters who were majorly youths and the aged came as early as 8am and blocked the expressway for hours, thus preventing free flow of traffic.


The ex-Governor James Ibori kinsmen alleged that the navy through their military might, forcefully occupied the land, measuring 600 X 600 hectares, stressing that series of representations made to the navy for a peaceful settlement or payment of compensation to the land owners failed. Consequently, they demanded that the military men should vacate their land, which they intend to build upon and use as farm lands and various other businesses.


“In 2006 when the Nigerian navy requested land for the construction of a barrack, a piece of land in the community which was initially meant for the Nigerian Mobile Force was traded to them and the police was relocated to Ogharefe.

But the navy have illegally acquired all lands and added more piece of land to the one allocated to them,” said the community in their statement which was read by Chief Stephen Egbivwre.


The embittered Oghara community members therefore pleaded with President Muhammadu Buhari to call the navy to order to ensure the continued sustenance of peace between them and the navy.


Reacting, the Flag Officer Commanding the Logistic Command, Nigerian Navy, Rear Admiral Begroy Iben-Enwo, said the navy is always at peace with the community, insisting that there was no intention of illegal acquisition of the land in dispute.


He explained that when the land in dispute was given to the navy, measuring 30 hectares, a representation was made to the Delta State government for additional land to build other things, and additional 234 hectares of land was approved.


According to him, certificate of occupancy was subsequently issued sometimes last year to authenticate the Navy ownership of the land.

Nigerian Navy Arrests Niger Delta Avengers’ Major Logistics Supplier

The Nigerian Navy (NN) said it had arrested a suspected member of the Niger Delta Avengers. This is contained in a statement signed by its Director of Information, Commodore Christian Ezekobe, and made available to newsmen in Abuja.

According to Ezekobe, the suspect who was picked up on July 11 at about 11 a.m., is believed to be a major logistics supplier to the group which had claimed responsibility for attacks on NNPC and Chevron pipelines in the region.

“The arrest was made following a confessional statement obtained from an earlier arrested suspect who gave details of the involvement of other collaborators in the attacks.

“Preliminary investigations also revealed that the suspect recently supplied 10 batteries, five large coils of wire and other materials purportedly used for the attacks,’’ the director said. The NN said it would continue to partner with sister security agencies and members of the public to eliminate all forms of economic sabotage such as vandalisation of pipelines and piracy.

Credit: Vanguard

Nigerian Navy Destroys 50 Illegal Refining Camps

The Central Naval Command, CNC, in Yenagoa, on Sunday destroyed 50 illegal oil refining camps and 150 drums of locally refined diesel at Asiagbene in Delta.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that CNC conducted the operation in collaboration with Nigeria Navy Ship, NNS, in Burutu Local Government Area of Delta.

Real Admiral Apochi Suleiman, the Flag Officer Commanding, Central Naval Command, Yenagoa, accompanied by Commodore Sule Aliyu, NNS chief in Delta, said that the largest illegal refinery in the region was discovered during the raid.

He said that the camps, numbering about 50, as well as a boat used to convey the stolen crude for refining, were destroyed during the raid on the oil thieves.

Mr. Suleiman said that no arrest was made as the oil thieves fled on sighting the ship.

He said that the oil thieves capitalized on the difficult terrain, adding that the journey to the creek took about three hours.

“There is no room for criminals in the waterways anymore; we are flushing them out,” he said.

He advised youths in the area to engage in legitimate business as the Navy was poised to deal with all forms of illegal activities in the region.

Credit: NAN