Thursday, July 28, 2016

Militants Vows To Bomb More Oil Facilities

MILITANTS group, the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA) has vowed to bomb more oil pipelines beginning from first week of August. The group warned oil workers and foreigners still in the region to vacate or risk their lives.

The group which has claimed respon­sibility for recent spate of bombings of oil facilities in the region said it has had enough of the dishonesty and tricks of the Federal Government, as it claimed the peace talk or dialogue purportedly initiated by the Federal Government was a delay tactics to enable the gov­ernment take delivery of arms includ­ing drones expected to arrive by end of August from the United States.

“This whole thing makes us to won­der what kind of country is this? We can all see that President Buhari-led govern­ment is a fraud. They are not serious about any dialogue. But they make it look as if the Niger Delta Avengers are the ones not ready for dialogue.

“Mr. President, you can purchase all the drones in Europe and the United States of America, it won’t stop the Niger Delta Avengers from bringing the country’s economy to zero.

“The worst you can do is to kill poor innocent people which the military is good at, but you should know that the Nigerian economy will suffer, as you will not be able to export one litre of crude in the Niger Delta. Just intensify the oil exploration in the North East. As for the ones in the Niger Delta, forget about it because the Nigerian govern­ment won’t export a drop from our land,” the militants bragged.

But the military has read the riot act to the militants to desist from attacking oil installations or face the consequences of their criminal actions.

Commander of Operation Delta Safe, Rear Admiral Joseph Okojie who gave the warning in Asaba during a courtesy call on Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State vowed that the multi-service task force was prepared to tackle any criminal action within the Nigerian maritime area.

He said the military has the mandate of President Muhammadu Buhari to secure the waters in the Niger Delta region covering part of Ondo, Edo and the entire Delta, Bayelsa, Rivers as well as part of Akwa Ibom states against security and economic threats.

Meanwhile, the Concerned Militant Leaders (CML) has claimed responsi­bility for the attack on the Nigerian Na­tional Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) pipeline, which occurred on Monday, at Obotim Ikot Ekong village in Akwa Ibom State.

Also, the CML said the Liberian ship, which its “rugged sea warriors” seized on Tuesday, July 19, 2016, on Bakassi Peninsula Nigerian waterways, would not be released, adding that the vessel would be named after Biafra.

Spokesperson of the group, General Ben, stated this yesterday, while react­ing to the statement by the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-General Tukur Buratai that the militants would be attacked, if government’s efforts to dialogue with militants proved futile.

General Ben claimed no active militant group has engaged the Federal Government in any discussion, warning that any individual who works against the collective agenda of the militants would regret his or her action.

However, former Managing Direc­tor of the defunct Nigerian Airways, Captain Mohammed Joji said Buhari should not romance the militants by going into dialogue with them. He said government should engage them “fire for fire.”

Joji said by blowing up oil pipelines and destroying other key facilities that affect the economy of the Nigeria, the militants have declared war against the Nigerian state, and therefore should not be pitied.

Captain Joji said the militant group has not only inflicted incalculable pains on Nigerians, but also about to cripple the nation’s economy.

While lamenting that the activities of the Avengers was responsible for the scarcity of aviation fuel, the aviation expert said if the the ‘madness’ was al­lowed to continue, it would ground the aviation industry, which would in turn ground the economy.

“Fuel scarcity in the aviation sector is a sabotage by the so-called Niger Delta Avengers, so pipeline vandalism must be brought to a halt if the crisis must end.

“I am not an advocate of negotiations with a terrorist group. The Federal Gov­ernment should forget about democracy and go fire for fire with the Avengers,” he said.

In a related development, former minister of mines and steel, Chief Sarafa Tunji Ishola enjoined President Buhari to quickly summon an emergen­cy Council of State meeting to address the prevailing insecurity.

Ishola said the president should not wait until the insecurity in Niger Delta, the agitation for Biafra Republic in the South East and the continuous killings of innocent Nigerians by herdsmen, spi­ral out of hand before convening such a meeting.

“Allowing insecurity to persist beyond the current level may spell doom for Buhari’s administration, because the level of poverty in Nigeria today is just too high that people are only tolerating his administration temporarily.

“If he should allow Nigerians to run out of patience and revolt against his administration, that may spell doom,” the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftain said.

The ex-minister explained that the president should not think the rising insecurity in the country was something he and his All Progressives Congress (APC) could solve alone.

“Buhari needs wisdom from former Heads of State and other elder states­men who have ruled this nation before him. So, he needs to call the Council of State meeting as a matter of urgency, with security matter as the sole agen­dum.”

Ishola noted that it would be a great error on the part of Buhari to think that the method he used about 31 years ago as military Head of State is what he would use now as civilian president.

“This is a democratic dispensation, you have to carry along critical stake­holders and also have listening ears, if not the insecurity will get out of hand. And if you are talking about diversifica­tion of the economy, tell me, which foreign investors will go to a country to invest where they are throwing bombs, kidnapping people and demanding huge ransoms?” he queried.

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