A new militant group, Niger Delta Avengers, has sprung up and is threatening to launch attacks oil pipelines over the alleged neglect of local communities by the government.
The group said in a statement on Monday, April 18, that President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration places more importance on the oil resources of the region than human lives..
The group took responsibility for February’s attack on an underwater pipeline that forced Shell to shut down its export terminal for weeks.
While speaking in China last week, the President had said the government would treat oil vandals like Boko Haram terrorists.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, last Sunday, also said the government would establish a permanent pipeline security force.
“The presidency can go ahead and set up a permanent security force, as stated by the vice president when he visited the SPDC (Shell Petroleum Development Company) Forcados Terminal,” the militant group said in a statement.
“We are not deterred by such threats as we are highly spirited and shall continue blowing up pipelines until the Niger Delta people are no longer marginalized by the Nigerian actors.”
The group also called warned the international community, especially China, from where Buhari has just returned, not loan Nigeria any money as “there will be no liters of crude oil to service the loan deal”.
Oil pipeline vandalism seemed to have stepped up in the country since ex-militant leader, Tompolo, was declared wanted in January by the Economic Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over corruption charges.