By Kennedy Mbele
The long history of pipeline explosions and regimented repetition in Nigeria make it mandatory for the Federal Government and National Assembly to find an urgent solution to the challenge, according to Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC).
“We call attention to the status of Lagos as Nigeria’s commercial nerve centre. This can drive away foreign investors who are already established in Lagos as well as discourage prospective foreign investors. Nobody wants to sink money in an endangered zone”, MURIC said in a statement by its Director, Professor Ishaq Akintola.
The statement then listed cases of explosions and their frequency in Lagos, saying they were frightening as more than 400 persons were killed since 2006.
“More than 300 people were killed in Abule Egba when a pipeline exploded during vandalisation on December 26, 2006. A bulldozer which struck an oil pipeline caused another huge conflagration that led to about 100 deaths in Ijegun on May 15, 2008. Fifteen houses and 20 vehicles were destroyed”, it said.
“Another oil pipeline vandalisation mishap killed several people in Abule Egba on June 30, 2009. Baruwa area of Alimosho had its own taste of large scale death and destruction due to the same reason on December 5, 2019. Many people were killed. Again on January 19, 2020, five fatalities were reported and several properties destroyed when oil pipeline vandals caused another explosion in Ekoro area of Abule Egba.
“The latest explosion at Abule Ado on Sunday, March 15, 2020 in which 15 people were killed while 50 houses were destroyed is one calamity too many. This carnage must stop.
“MURIC appeals to the FG to take drastic actions against pipeline vandals. We suggest the creation of an anti-vandalisation unit in any of the security agencies similar to the anti-terrorism and anti-kidnapping units already in existence”.