Calabar – The Eastern Naval Command (ENC) of the Nigerian Navy in Calabar, Cross River, on Friday received a new warship, the NNS Centenary.
The Chief of Naval Staff (CNS), Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas, who was on ground to receive it at the NNS Victory jetty, said the ship was the newest in the navy’s fleet.
Ibas said that the ship would further reinforce the presence of the navy in the eastern flank of the country’s maritime domain.
He said that the ship was acquired to patrol the maritime domain of the Eastern Naval Command in order to keep the water safe from oil thieves and sea pirates.
“When we talk about maritime security, you have to know that it goes with development.
“Maritime security has a nexus with development. Nobody wants to do business in an insecure environment.
“The bulk of resources that bring development come from the sea; the essence of the new ship is to reinforce our presence in the Eastern flank of the nation’s maritime space,’’ he said.
According to the chief of naval staff, the ship has the capacity to carry helicopters and other vital instruments.
“The new ship is capable of staying at sea for two weeks. It is no longer going to be business as usual for the bad guys at sea.
“Those doing their businesses at sea would have confidence to go about their business at ease,’’ he said.
He warned criminals operating on Nigeria’s water ways to stay off, adding that the navy was not friendly to such categories of persons.
Ibas in company with the Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral Henry Babalola, later paid a visit to Gov. Ben Ayade.
Ibas also inspected the Navy Reference Hospital in Calabar.