Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
Suspected militants over the weekend attacked an oil facility in Koluama, southern Ijaw Local Government Area of Bayelsa State.
Ango 5 and 6 oil field believed to be owned by the Consolidated Oil (Conoil) was blown up by a group of militants called Koluama Seven Brothers.
The group in a statement signed by its President, General Angel Michael, said the attack on the oil facility was because of some unresolved issues bordering on implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on scholarship and job creation for the people of the area.
It said the attack was a warning to Conoil, adding that if it failed to address the issues being raised by the people of the area, it would carry out further attacks to shut down the operations of the oil firm.
“Our early hours’ strike of 12:20am January 4, 2019, at Angle 2 field of Conoil is just a warning to Conoil. If Conoil fails to address the issues behind the MoU, scholarships, job creation for the peace-loving people of Koluama clan, then we have no other option than to lunch a strike to shut down Conoil.”
A youth leader in Koluama community, Mr Henry Omietimi, who said he was briefed of the incident by a member of a local security attached to the area, however, said he was yet to get the full details.
He also said he was investigating to know whether it was really an attack on the oil field or an attack on the pipeline.
The Media Officer of the Bayelsa command of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) Mr J. N. Harcourt, confirmed the incident but said he was yet to get details.
“I am yet to receive full details from the officer-in-charge of Koluama due to bad network,” he said.
The factional president of the Ijaw Youths Council, Mr Eric Omare, cautioned against early attribution of the attack to a militant group to signal the resumption of hostilities in the Niger Delta region. He promised to investigate and issue a detailed statement.
“I’m yet to get the details of the pipeline explosion hence it would be premature to assume that it was a militant attack. I will issue a detail statement.”