BLACK SOOT: WIKE TASKS RIVERS CP, OTHERS TO ARREST, PROSECUTE ILLEGAL REFINERS
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has charged the Rivers State Commissioner of Police to liase with other security agencies, Council Chairmen and Traditional Institutions to fish out those involved in illegal bunkering and artisanal refining of crude oil in the State.
Governor Wike said persons engaged in illegal bunkering and artisanal refining, known locally as "Kpo fire", are responsible for the black soot and some other environmental hazards endangering the health of residents of Rivers State.
The Governor gave this directive at the Rivers State Command of the Force's dinner and award night, which held at the Police Officers Mess, Old Government Residential Area, Port Harcourt, weekend.
The Governor was represented by the Chief of Staff, Government House, Port Harcourt, Chief Emeka Woke. He said the State Government has resolved to arrest and prosecute those involved in crude oil theft and illegal refining of crude in the state, once and for all.
He also said the State Government will provide the Police and other security agencies all that is required to dislodge and permanently put a stop to the activities of artisanal refiners in Rivers State. Governor Wike also stated that since the Commissioner of Police, Friday Eboka assumed duty last year, Rivers State has witnessed peace and improved policing
He said; "The State is prepared to fight them more than ever before. Little wonder the crime index in the State has reduced drastically. We thought we are the only people witnessing it, but with the award you got from the wife of the Inspector General of Police, it is an eloquent testimony that what we are seeing as a State, is also being observed from all the nation."
"As a State, we will continue to support the Security Agencies. Our support for security agencies is not only centered on the Police Force. We also extend similar gestures to the Navy, Air Force and others.
"For us, we believe the primary function of any responsible government is to protect life and property. So, we have no option than to continue to support in providing logistics and everything that can make the security agencies in the State to function very well.
"Because we believe that if our people are safe and the life here is peaceful, there will be increase in economics activities and the Internally Generated Revenue will also go up."
The Governor also singled out the 42nd and incumbent Commissioner of Police in the State, Friday Eboka, for discharging his duties professionally. He said policing in Rivers State has improved remarkably because the management of the Nigeria Police Force at the Force Headquarters and State Command had since distanced themselves from politics.
The CP, Friday Eboka stated that 2021 was a remarkable year for the Command because Rivers State emerged as one of the most peaceful states in Nigeria.
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