- Governor Okowa condemns killing of soldiers, civilians
(Paul Osuyi, ASABA)
Members of the emergent militant group, Niger Delta Avengers yesterday claimed responsibility for blowing up of the Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) Fordacos 48 Exportline in Delta State.
Besides, the group blew up the Ogboinbiri to Tebidaba and Clough Creek to Tebidaba Crude Oil pipelines in Bayelsa State at the early hours of yesterday.
NDA wrote on its Twitter handle yesterday that the latest action was “in line with our promise to all international oil companies and indigenous oil companies that Nigeria oil production will be zero.”
However, NDA denied killing of six persons including two soldiers and four civilians who were reportedly murdered in their sleep on a houseboat in Warri, Delta State, claiming that no blood of a Nigerian soldier would be “wasted” by the NDA.
“The Niger Delta Avengers were not involved in the attack of the Military houseboat around Warri, Delta State. Killing of sleeping Soldiers is not our style.
“We promise the world that in this process of liberating our people, not a single blood of Nigeria soldiers will be wasted despite the provocation,” the group said.
The NDA has claimed responsibility for some recent attacks on ENI, NNPC, Chevron and Shell facilities. The series of attacks have seen the country’s oil production plummeted to a 20-year low.
Meanwhile, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State has condemned the recent killing of Nigerian soldiers, and other civilians, who were in a houseboat attack, in Omadino, Warri South Local Government Area of the state, by suspected Militants.
In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Charles Ehiedu Aniagwu, Governor Okowa noted that this killing was criminality carried too far as nothing justified the taking of lives of uniformed security men who were out to protect the common property of Nigerians.
“Your activities could turn Delta State into a theatre of war and this portends great danger to the whole population aside from casting the image of the state as insecure and unfit for investment. We cannot, as a state, afford this rascality if we hope to make progress,” he said.
Okowa who recalled his earlier appeals on any aggrieved member of the society including Niger Delta militants, to embrace dialogue, observed that this informed the decision by his government to constitute an advocacy committee which went round the creeks and oil producing communities, to canvass support for a violence-free Delta- as a precondition for development.
Noting that no society can develop in an atmosphere of chaos and criminality and that no government would fold its hands in the face of this high level of aggravation and utter disregard for the sanctity of human lives, the governor called on Deltans to rally round government to bring the perpetrators to book.
“For the umpteenth time, I wish to call on well-meaning people of Delta State to speak up and not only condemn the activities of these militants but also offer their best counsel and commitment towards resolving this crisis,” Okowa said.
He extended the condolences of his family and the people of Delta State to the families of the victims and prayed God to grant them eternal rest while urging the security agencies to ensure that the culprits do not go scot free.
Governor Okowa also advised members of the Niger Delta Avengers to embrace dialogue as a means of resolving the crisis, adding that a peaceful and secured state is what is needed for development to thrive.