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Niger Delta Avengers blow up another NNPC pipeline

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Just in: Niger Delta Avengers blow up another NNPC pipeline

Niger Delta Avengers has blown up a large gas and crude pipeline operated by Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

The nasty incident took place around Batan community, Warri South-West council area of Delta state.

Niger Delta Avengers is a militant group from the region that has vowed to cripple the nation’s economy.

Just a day before, the militants struck by blowing up a major electricity feed pipeline located in the Escravos area of Delta State.

The attack was announced by the Niger Delta Avengers via their Twitter handle, @NDAvengers.

The bombing followed mounting anxiety in the Niger Delta as the two-week ultimatum given owners of oil blocs in the region by the Avengers to evacuate their staff and shut down operations ended on Thursday.

Meanwhile secret talks with the militant group have run into  a hitch.

The armed militant group, said the latest action was carried out after Chevron ignored its May 12 warning not to fix a major crude pipeline blown up by the group early in the month.

The militant group made the declaration in a statement by its spokesperson, Col Murdoch Agbinibo on May 12.

The group gave the former Minister of Defence, General Theophilus Danjuma (retd), former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar and other declared oil bloc owners two weeks  to shut down operations or have themselves to blame.

Barely one week ago, a gas pipeline in the Niger Delta region operated by the NNPC was attacked.

The attack occurred late on Thursday, according to a spokesman for a local community group and a witness.

The pipeline, which connects the Escravos oil terminal to Warri, supplies gas to different parts of the country.

There have been a resurgence in militant attacks in the oil-rich southern region in the last few weeks, with strikes on pipelines and oil facilities.

Reuters quoted a spokesman for the Ijaw Youth Council, as saying the attack occurred around the village of Ogbe Ijoh, near Warri.

Local resident, James Dadiowei, said a “loud bang” at the NNPC pipeline had thrown the community into panic on Thursday night.

“The explosion occurred last night on the pipeline belonging to the NNPC,” said Omare.

It is not clear if the gas pipelines provides gas to any electricity company.

But recent attacks on gas pipelines have been blamed for the nation’s current poor power situation, as the nation of over 160 million people share a capacity that is below 4,000 megawatts.

President Muhammadu Buhari had earlier on Friday in Abuja assured oil companies operating in the Niger Delta that the Federal Government was taking all necessary actions to protect strategic assets in the region from vandals and criminals.

He spoke at a meeting with the Global Director (Upstream) of the Royal Dutch Shell Group, Mr Andrew Brown.

The President told the oil giant that he had directed the Chief of Naval Staff to reorganise and strengthen the military Joint Task Force in the Niger Delta to deal effectively with the  resurgence of militancy and the sabotage of oil installations.

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