Unknown vandals blow up an Agip pipeline in the early hours of November 13, 2014; the military Joint Taskforce spokesman has said.
JTF spokesman, Col. Anka Mustapha said he could not provide further details about the sabotage. However, he said appropriate steps have been taken with a view to arresting the vandals.
Angry youths around Nembe area of Bayelsa state had launched a series of attacks on the oil Pipeline facilities and oil wellheads belonging to the Nigerian Agip Oil Company over “Security Surveillance Contract” disputes in the area.
The latest hostility against the oil company is coming o days after the Nembe Council Chairman, Eminah Bennett, forwarded a petition to the office of the Deputy Governor of the state, retired Rear Admiral John Jonah accusing AGIP of “divide and rule tactics” in the area.
Eyewitnesses said the youths who wore ski masks stormed the area in commando style and blew up “Well 7” as well as the Obama Oil Field pipeline connecting Brass Area with Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs).
Sources in the community have alleged that the attack was a deliberate attempt by one group to portray the other as being inefficient and unqualified to handle an existing security surveillance jobs in the area.
While a faction of the Okoroma community accused the Nembe Council Chairman, Eminah Beneth of attempts to hijack the Surveillance job in the area through his loyalists,others claimed the struggle for the surveillance contract is being orchestrated from the office of the Deputy Governor.
A faction of the Community Youth Association known as “Okoroma Liberation Movement” through its Coordinator, Jephthah Olali and Secetary, Clement Adaminegbe, claimed the incident was the outcome of the attempt by loyalists of top politicians in Nembe to hijack the Security Surveillance job and hand it over to their cronies.
“They want to muscle out the multitude of youths from Obama Area benefiting from a pipeline protection job that has reduced cases of illegal bunkering and pipeline vandalism.”
In the letter, dated November 6th, 2014, the Nembe Council Chairman, Beneth accused Agip of divide and rule tactics capable of throwing the Okoroma community into crises.
According to the letter, the Nigerian Agip Oil Company allegedly sided with a small faction of the community through patronage and award of security surveillance contracts.