The rampaging militant group, Niger Delta Avengers, on Wednesday night attacked three oil manifolds belonging to Chevron Nigeria Limited around the creeks of Warri in Warri North Local Government Area of Delta State.
There was however a drama after the militants blew up the facilities as they opened fire on local surveillance youths who had attempted to know what was happening following the explosions.
Local sources told one of our correspondents that the incident took place along the creeks of Ikparagbene community near Dibi Flow Station that was recently attacked by the militants in Warri North Local Government Area of the state.
The group’s spokesman, Mudoch Agbinibo, some residents and security agencies confirmed the incident.
One of our correspondents gathered that the loud explosions which heralded the attacks woke up many residents from their sleep.
A villager from the community told one of our correspondents on the telephone that youths from the area who had gone to the area to ascertain what was amiss were ambushed by the militants.
It was however not clear if any member of the surveillance team was injured or killed in the attack.
The local surveillance team was employed by the oil company to guard oil facilities in the area.
Industry sources who also confirmed the attacks, added that a technical expert team had been dispatched to the incident site to ascertain the level of damage.
A source noted that the affected manifolds were crude oil platforms that supply crude to Chevron Escravos Terminal.
The Avengers, while confirming the attack in a statement posted on their website said, “Between the hours of 10.50pm and 11.10pm our (Niger Delta Avengers) strike team blew up Chevron Manifolds. The manifolds are RMP 22, 23 and 24.”
The militants also wished all Muslims a happy Eid Mubarak.
In a similar statement, it also announced that the group had shut down all its social media accounts, saying that it would now be communicating with members of the public through its website.
According to The Avengers, fraudsters had taken over their activities on the blogging sites including Facebook and Twitter.
The spokesperson for the Delta State Police Command, SP Celestina Kalu, confirmed that there was an explosion on oil facilities but the command had yet to receive any report on the extent of damage.
But the spokesperson for the 4 Brigade of the Nigerian Army in Benin, Edo State, Capt. Musa Maidawa, said he had not been briefed on the incident.
Meanwhile, a federal commissioner representing North-Central geopolitical zone in the Public Complaints Commission, Alhaji Abubakar Tsav, has called on the Niger Delta militants to turn their attacks on their leaders who failed them rather than destroying state facilities.
Tsav, who is a former Lagos State Commissioner of Police, decried the incessant attacks on the nation’s oil wells, adding that the militants were misdirecting their anger on the nation.
“That is why I’m calling on them (militants) not to pour the sins of their corrupt leaders on the nation, let them turn the guns and bombs on those leaders who have mercilessly embezzled what belong to the people of Niger Delta and allow peace to reign in the country,” he said.