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Panic over significant gas leakage on the Agip pipeline in Bayelsa.

Panic over significant gas leakage on the Agip pipeline in Bayelsa.

A massive leakage of substance suspected to be gas on a Nigeria Agip Oil Company, NAOC, operated pipeline located along Kolo-Otuoke/ Bayelsa Palm Road in Ogbia Local Government Area of Bayelsa State is causing concern among people.

leak

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Confirming the event, a NAOC officer who did not want to be identified said vandals blew off the gas pipeline a few days after it was repaired.

Alagoa Morris, the Head of Environmental Rights Action Friends of the Earth Nigeria, ERA/FoEN, said yesterday during a visit to the site that the leak was the second in recent times.

It was alleged that there was a battery connected with wire, implying sabotage, amid claims of an explosion on Monday night, which may have resulted in the rupture of the gas pipeline.

Morris said: “There are giant anthills on the Agip pipeline, which might also help the people to sabotage the system even in the afternoon to burst the pipeline because it will serve as a cover for the perpetrators.

“We have SPDC pipelines on the other side and Agip pipelines this way and both are running on the same line. That means there should be visibility so that people passing by will see any intruder whether in the day time or night. That could also send signal that something is happening here.

“And this is raw gas coming out from the geological formation. Knowing that from the formation we have water, oil and gas from several wells being channelled to wherever they are channelling it to which even make it more dangerous than gas flare in terms of impact on health, and can even result in fire if urgent step is not taken.

“In essence, what we are saying is that there should be enough security guiding the pipeline and that is why the recent contract given to some Niger Delta indigenes is very important and they should swing into action to ensure that not only the pipeline is protected but that the perpetrators should be apprehended and make to face the wrath of the law.”

He stated that the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency, NOSDRA, had already visited the location and hoped that other pertinent agencies, such as the Ministry of Environment, which had also visited the location, would mark the area as a no-go area due to the risk it portends.

Mr. Kelvin Irhurhu, a local citizen who expressed concern over the event, pleaded with the government and other relevant agencies to act quickly to stop the leak before something terrible happened.

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Daniel Mathias

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