Attacks on oil installations in Delta State entered the third day, yesterday, as militants blew-up major crude oil and gas pipelines to the Chevron Nigeria Limited, CNL, Tank Farm in Warri South West Local Government Area of the state.
Blown up on Friday night was the main crude line from Makaraba through Otunana and Abiteye to Escravos while Olero to Escravos gas line was attacked in the early hours of yesterday.
Earlier on Thursday, the Escravos – Warri – Abuja – Lagos pipelines came under attack. The Itsekiri raised the alarm, yesterday, that the attacks could metamorphose into another Ijaw-Itsekiri war.
These acts of sabotage are coming at a time when global crude oil price continues its downward move.
THE military, yesterday, deployed army and naval personnel in the creeks of Delta State to contain the militants.
Our source, who spoke from one of the Ijaw communities in Gbaramatu Kingdom, Warri South-West Local Government Area, at about 5.30 pm said, “The situation is not clear yet, but there are gunboats everywhere. It is a combined team of soldiers and navy people patrolling the creeks.
“Movement is restricted. The military personnel are going about to show their presence and scare the militants, who strike in the night and not in the daytime. But, at least, their presence has shown that the military was ready to confront them.”
The authorities, caught napping by the resumption of hostilities four days ago, reportedly saw the danger of allowing further bombings and mobilised to counter the militants.
After bombing the Escravos-Warri-Abuja-Lagos pipelines at about 10.00 pm on Thursday, the militants were emboldened to blow up Chevron Nigeria Limited, CNL’s Utunana –Makaraba crude oil line at 10.30 pm on Friday and proceeded to bomb Olero gas line in the early hours of yesterday.
Their target it is believed is to cripple crude oil production and arm-twist the Federal Government. Already, CNL, heavily hit by the Thursday and Friday attacks, was considering shutting down operations, even as workers have been restricted to their camps in the affected locations.