Barely a day after it threatened to attack oil and gas installations within the upland part of the Niger Delta, a new militant group, Niger Delta Greenland Justice Mandate, on Wednesday reportedly blew up a major oil trunk line in Isoko area of Delta State.
The NDGJM had on Tuesday threatened to attack oil facilities located in the upland of the region, including the Warri and Port-Harcourt refineries, following alleged Federal Government’s failure to develop upland communities as well as include them in the ongoing dialogue with Ijaw militants.
The incident, which occurred at about 2am on Wednesday, left the pipeline which feeds the Eriemu Manifold, operated by Nigerian Petroleum Development Company in Ughelli North Local Government Area of the state, destroyed.
A military source at the 3 Battalion, Agbarho-Otor, confirmed the attack but refused to give details as the incident was being investigated by security agencies in the area.
The spokesperson for the group, Aldo Agbalaja, claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement issued late Wednesday evening.
It said the operation was carried out under its ‘Operation Zero’ which was targeted at national assets even as it threatened more of such similar attacks in days to come.
The statement partly read, “The Central Operations Command of the Niger Delta Greenland Justice Mandate hereby announces the commencement of demolition and evacuation of the uplands tagged, “Operation Zero” to correct the wrongs that have afflicted our people for years, seek justice for the perpetually cheated and protect the identities of our people, who are co-owners of the wealth which Nigeria has forever misappropriated.
“As a mark of our seriousness and to prove we are people of our words, at about 0200hours of today; Wednesday, August 10, 2016, operatives of the Niger Delta Greenland Justice Mandate brought down a Major Trunk/Delivery Line from Isoko to the Eriemu Manifold in Urhobo, belonging to the NPDC/Shoreline Resources.”
The group also gave a strong warning to the NPDC not to commence repairs on the affected trunk line as it would not hesitate to attack its personnel.
“This is just a glimpse of what is to come; there are several assets already penned up for destruction. This line of action has been made inevitable by an unjust system, which only responds to the violent, to the detriment of the peaceful and law abiding,” the statement added.
Efforts by our correspondent to confirm the incident from the zonal spokesperson for the NPDC, Mr. Ugo Atugbokoh, were unsuccessful as calls to his telephone line were not picked.