The Nigerian Navy ship NNS SOROH conducted a raid on a suspected pirates’ hideout in the Foropa community of the Southern Ijaw Local Government Area in Bayelsa State on Friday.
Commodore Adedotun Ayo-Vaughan, the Director of Naval Information, announced on Sunday in Abuja that the Naval Base in Yenagoa has been actively engaged in operations to combat piracy and crude oil theft.
The operation carried out on Friday was part of NNS SOROH’s efforts to prevent the proliferation of illegal weapons before, during, and after the off-cycle governorship election held on Saturday in Bayelsa.
According to Ayo-Vaughan, the naval base deployed an anti-sea robbery patrol team from one of its naval security stations to conduct the operation in the area.
Upon the sight of the Nigerian Navy patrol team gunboats, the suspected pirates fled into the bushes. The special anti-sea robbery team cordoned off and searched the area, leading to the recovery of various weapons and items.
The recovered items included one general-purpose machine gun with 100 links, two AK-47 rifles, one locally-made gun, two Tavor magazines, 11 rounds of 7.62 ammunition, two cartridge rounds of a pump-action gun, two 200-horsepower Yamaha engines, five Baofeng radios, a small Techno Android phone, one GPS phone, three small Techno phones, and camouflage uniforms.
Ayo-Vaughan further stated that the pirates’ camp was deactivated to prevent criminals from using it as a shelter in the future.
He reassured that the Nigerian Navy will continue to conduct such operations to apprehend criminals who seek to undermine the democratic process, disrupt public peace, or jeopardize maritime security. The Navy will collaborate with relevant stakeholders to create a peaceful maritime environment conducive to legitimate business activities for law-abiding citizens.