The Nigerian Navy through its Forward Operating Base (FOB) in Ibaka, Mbo local government area of Akwa Ibom State has said that its intense patrols along the borders of Akwa Ibom and neighbouring countries have checked the influx of illegal aliens into the state. In a press statement released in Uyo, the state capital, the commanding officer of FOB, Captain Peter Yilme said that the daily patrols of naval gunboats from the jetty to check all forms of illegalities around its area of operation had yielded results. He explained that with the intensified patrols, rice smuggling has been halted, adding that the efforts would be sustained. Yilme said that the patrols would continue to check and prevent all forms of illegalities as well as stop illegal immigrants from the Republic of Cameroon and neighbouring countries from gaining entry into the state until the COVID-19 pandemic is over. He lauded the chief of naval staff, (CNS) Vice Admiral Ibok Ette Ibas, and the flag officer commanding (FOC) Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral David Adeniran for providing the logistics required to accomplish the twin feats. He said: “In compliance with directives from Naval headquarters received through headquarters, Eastern Naval Command and in order to maintain the Akwa Ibom State restrictions on movement on the waterways. “Efforts were concentrated to checkmate and prevent all forms of illegalities as well as stop illegal immigrants coming in from the Republic of Cameroon or other countries bordering Akwa Ibom State into own waters with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic in the country and the latest outbreak in Akwa Ibom State. “Such patrol is to be sustained until a period when the threat of COVID-19 is no more in existence. “It is pertinent to state that so far, FOB Ibaka patrol effort is yielding results as the travel restriction within the waterways has reduced the influx of migrants into Akwa Ibom State, particularly within FOB Ibaka area of operation. “The base wishes to thank the chief of naval staff, Vice Admiral Ibok Ette Ibas, for the provision of logistic support to ensure that our platforms are available for such patrols. “Appreciation also goes to the flag officer commanding Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral David Adeniran for ensuring that the base lacks nothing in pursuit of her assigned tasks,” he said.
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