Two meet their death and 12 injured as a pipeline exploded yesterday in Lagos at Ijegun Satellite Town.
The state emergency management agency confirmed and said the explosion was caused by pipeline vandals who were scooping petrols from pipes in the area.
Mr. Ibrahim Farinloye who happen to be the NEMA south west zone spokesman said the agency had alerted the NNPC management and other relevant agencies of the development, he continue in his statement and confirmed that “the vandals are responsible for the incident and some of them are affected on the infecto”.
According to NNPC’s Group General Manager (Group Public Affairs Division), Ndu Ughamadu, the corporation is currently finding a modern approach to the recurring cases of vandalism, especially laying pipes deeper in the ground.
“We are not in charge of security. We are doing our jobs to lay the pipes and pump fuel. On laying the pipeline deeper, we have done that through modern technology and we have engaged local communities in addition to what the security agents are doing. But you find out that as we perfect our plans, so this vandals equally do theirs,” he said.
But Dr. Ndubuisi Nwokolo, Senior Policy and Research lead at Nextier SPD (Security, Peace, and Development), insisted Nigerians must interrogate International Oil Companies (IOCs), NNPC and other players on the reliability of pipelines across the country.
It is easy to blame vandals for previous attacks, he said, but it is unclear if other reasons such as valve or pipeline leakages might not be worsening the situation.
“Our country has sets of regulatory agencies that fail in their roles. Between faulty leaking pipes and valves, and deliberate attacks on these pipelines, we are not sure as we are not holding the oil companies and NNPC to account on maintenance of the pipelines,” he explained.
Nwokolo noted that pipeline vandalism could continue until the country develops a community security strategy. And to NNPC’s claim that such is already in place, Nwokolo said the commission’s approach is not tactical.