Our Absence Has Led To Increased Attacks On Oil Pipelines, More Deaths – OPC

1opc2The Oodua Peoples Congress, OPC, says the increase in pipeline vandalism in the South-West assumed a frightening dimension soon after it stopped protecting oil pipelines.
The group said this while reacting to the death of over 100 people in the fire that occurred as a result of pipeline explosion in the Arepo area of Ogun State.
The immediate past administration of Dr. Goodluck Jonathan had three months before the last general elections, awarded the OPC a contract worth billions of naira to secure pipelines in the South-West.
The award of the contract was viewed in some quarters as a bribe by the former president to secure the support of the group towards his re-election but soon after he lost and President Muhammadu Buhari was sworn-in, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation revoked the contract.
However, the OPC said in a statement by its Director of Media and Publicity, Mr. Yinka Oguntimehin, that had the All Progressives Congress-led government put national interest above political sentiments, pipeline vandalism would have become a thing of the past.
The statement read, “It is no doubt regrettable that in a little more than one month after our men quit the job, more than 200 deaths have been recorded as a result of the activities of pipeline vandals.
“While some people condemned our men and called us names, it is on record that nothing of this magnitude happened during the period of the three months that our operatives secured the pipelines.
“Of particular interest was the comment of the spokesperson for the Lagos chapter of the APC, Mr. Joe Igbokwe, in which he referred to our members as hoodlums and outlaws.
“You will recall that while our men worked at the site of the pipeline in Arepo, even the people of the community had a sense of safety, obviously because the presence of our men in the area. But all that sense of safety is gone with the wind once again, with the return of the vandals”.
The group urged the Federal Government not to abandon the OPC but cooperate with the group as the task of securing pipelines was more complex than the ordinary approach.
It added, “In the last one month, similar deaths were recorded in Ikorodu and Ijedodo, both in Lagos, and in Bayelsa State, all as a result of the activities of pipeline vandals.
“Unfortunately, because we have placed politics above matters of national importance, the vandals have resumed their nefarious activities, killing and maiming our people, while at the same time denying the nation of huge sums of income that can be used to develop the country.
“However, having said that, we must find a lasting solution to the incessant and ugly activities of the vandals. Their actions are ill winds that will blow nobody any good”.

1 Comment

  • Unfortunately, it is clear that the government must do more to fight pipeline vandalism. As much as some may feel it is justice for the vandals to die at their own hands, that is not how a modern country can hope to deal with criminals. I know PMB is doing what he can to remedy this, but still… hopefully we will see results soon.

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