Bombing of oil and gas pipelines in the Niger Delta is yet to abate as a militant group blew up a Chevron well and oil pipelines near Warri in Delta State late Monday.
Meanwhile, Arewa leaders have called on the Niger Delta Avengers and other militants to embrace a ceasefire and lay down their arms, saying it is time to accept the window of dialogue offered by the Federal Government.
The group known as Niger Delta Avengers, in a statement posted on their website and signed as their spokesman, Brig-Gen. Mudoch Agbinibo, said: “At 10.23pm Monday night, the Niger Delta Avengers blew up Chevron pipeline at Batan and Makarava.”latest in the string of bombings over the past weeks has contributed to a fall in Nigeria’s crude oil production to a 30-year low.
The group also claimed responsibility for vandalism of Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) facilities. “Other attacks were carried out at 11:15pm as Niger Delta Avengers blew up NPDC Manifold close to Banta and two PPMC/NNPC crude oil trunk lines,” Agbinibo said in the statement.
In a related development, the US Mission in Nigeria has warned that groups associated with terrorist activity might be planning attacks against hotels in Lagos frequented by international visitors, including those located on waterfronts, during the Eid-al-fitri holidays.
“The US mission in Nigeria reminds you to review your personal security plans, remain aware of your surrounding, including local events, and monitor local news stations for updates. Be vigilant and take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security,” the mission advised.
The Northern leaders, under the auspices of Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF), in a statement issued by their National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Muhammad Ibrahim, said: “ACF in the spiritof Eid el FItr celebration calls on the Niger Delta Avengers and other militant groups engaged in the destruction of oil and gas pipelines and other economic structures to lay down their arms and embrace the Federal Government’s offer of dialogue”.
According to the group, “destroying oil pipelines and polluting the environment is not a solution to whatever perceived grievances the groups may have against the government and oil companies. “Development and prosperity can only take place in an atmosphere of peace and understanding and not violence and destruction.