Niger Delta violence ramps up
ABUJA, May 9, 2016 – A string of attacks in the oil-rich Niger Delta, including a recent hit on a Chevron offshore facility, are threatening to cripple the local economy. Nigerian media over the weekend reported on another three attacks on oil installations, apparently carried out as part of a co-ordinated effort.
The Sun newspaper on Sunday wrote that a trunkline feeding the Warri and Kaduna refineries, both recently rehabilitated, was blown up on Thursday. It was also rumoured that militants, reportedly the newly established Niger Delta Avengers, had hit a gas pipeline feeding Abuja and Lagos-based power plants. The group allegedly also struck an oil flow station tied to a Chevron-operated tank farm in Warri.
The US operator, whose Okan facility was taken out last Wednesday, on Monday said it was losing 35,000 bopd in production as a result. Chevron also confirmed that all its personnel was accounted for and without injury.
On Sunday, the president’s office released a statement saying that President Muhammadu Buhari had given “special instruction to the military, especially to the Chief of Naval Staff, that this ugly development of vandals in the Niger Delta should end immediately.”
In a response to the uptick in violence, Shell on Saturday evacuated 98 people from oil mining licence 79, leaving only key personnel on the platform.
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