The Nigerian Navy (NN), on Monday handed over a merchant vessel, MT Good Success loaded with 1,940 metric tons of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for prosecution.
The vessel was arrested by the Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS) Andoni, commanded by Captain Chidi Okpala, around Lagos waters after it was discovered that the vessel contained 1,940 metric tons of PMS instead of the 350metrics tons it was licensed to load.
During the hand over, the Commander NNS BEECROFT, Commodore Ovenseri Uwadiae, said after the navy’s preliminary investigation, a prima facie case was established against the vessel and in line with extant provisions, the NN headquarters gave directives to handover the vessel to EFCC for further investigation and prosecution.
He said, “MT Good Success has clarence to carry 350 metric tons of AGO but upon arrest by NNS ANDONI, it was discovered that instead of the AGO it was cleared to carry, the vessel had 1,940 metric tons of PMS.
“The conditions for clearance for AGO and PMS are not the same because of the subsidy regime in PMS and so, the ship was impounded. We are using this opportunity to warn members of the public that the game is over.
“The years illegalities thrived in our maritime domain are over. People must follow due process and ensure they have documents to back their dealings because the Chief of the Naval Staff (CNS) Vice Admiral Usman Jibrin has mandated us to ensure the law takes its full course on those found wanting.
Although the vessel and its content would be kept in navy’s custody as requested by the EFCC, Uwadiae said the commission should ensure that a letter be written to that effect so that it will be clearly stated that the navy was keeping the vessel for EFCC.
In his response, EFCC’s Counter Terrorism and General Investigation boss, Aminu Aliyu, said investigation would commence investigation.