The Nigerian Navy on Friday expressed concern over the alarming increase in the number of illegal maritime security outfits in the country.
The service said some of the outfits use the Nigerian Navy uniforms while others make use of uniforms similar to that of the service to deceive unsuspecting Nigerians.
These were contained in a statement by the spokesperson for the service, Adedotun Ayo-Vaughan, on Friday.
The statement partly read, ” We note with dismay the unscrupulous activities of some impostors and self-acclaimed maritime security outfits who make use of naval uniforms and accoutrements including uniforms that resemble naval uniforms to deceive, harass, intimidate, and defraud unsuspecting members of the public. Some of these outfits go as far as selling recruitment forms to the public and even conduct secret recruitment exercises and training.
“The activities of these impostors and miscreants are observed to be on the rise notwithstanding the proscription order of the Federal Government of Nigeria official Gazette No. 58 Vol 100 titled “The Dissolution and Proscription of Certain Associations Order, 2013” banning all such firms/outfits.”
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Ayo-Vaughan stated that the Navy in the past had arrested and handed over for prosecution members of some of these outlawed organisations.
He said their increase was worrisome and could lead to a rise in maritime crime if not checked.
Ayo-Vaughan said, “Nevertheless, their illegal activities have continued unabated in some parts of the country, particularly the South-south geopolitical zone.
Pertinently, the proliferation of illegal maritime security outfits is worrisome and may worsen the scourge of insecurity in the country with likely grave impact on national security.”
He, however, warned those behind these outfits to desist, vowing that the service would leave no stone unturned in her bid to secure the maritime environment for enhanced security of lives and properties and for the conduct of legitimate maritime commerce. ,
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