The Nigerian Gas Company (NGC), on Monday warned members of the public against gas pipeline encroachment and vandalism.
NGC gave this warning as it kicked-off it’s sensitization campaign against gas pipeline encroachment and vandalism at Ajaokuta council area of Kogi State.
The enlightenment campaign which took off from the Palace of the Ohi of Eganyi kingdom, witnessed a road show where the people around the community were sensitized about the dangers involved in encroachment of gas pipelines.
Addressing the people of Eganyi Community at the Palace, the Managing Director of NGC, Warri, Engr Seyi Omotowa, who was represented by the Public Affairs Manager of NGC, Mr Darlington Samuel, told the crowd that gathered at the palace that encroachment of gas pipelines can lead to lose of life and property.
He noted that encroachment of gas pipelines was not only dangerous but also a crime punishable by the laws of the land.
He further advised those who are farming and building houses on gas pipeline right of way to desist from such actions as it could lead to disaster.
Omotowa said, “We are here to inform and enlighten the people of Ajaokuta about the dangers involved in encroaching on gas pipelines right of way.
“As a Federal Government we want to ensure that our property and your property is secured. We also want to ensure that your lives are not put in danger.
“We all know that this is a Federal Government project and this is why we have come to tell this communities that little action and inaction can lead to disaster and lose of lives.
“If there is a little gas leak in any of the gas pipelines and we have a little spark of fire around that area, the whole place will be on fire. This is what we are trying to avoid.”
Responding, His Royal Highness, Alhaji Musa Idaho Achuja, the Ohi of Eganyi and Chairman Traditional Council of Ajaokuta, commended NGC for the enlightenment campaign saying that it was a good thing that NGC have taken the pains to come to enlighten the community.
He said, “I want to use this opportunity to thank the Federal Government, especially the Nigerian Gas Company because NGC is one of the government companies that we have benefitted from greatly.
“We are happy with the sensitization campaign that they (NGC) have brought to this community and we on our part will make sure that we carry this campaign to all our communities.
The monarch advised his subjects to take the sensitization campaign seriously, adding that the federal government does not want anybody to die because of the project they have here.
The youths President of Ajaokuta, Comrade Shaibu Ayimi, who spoke to on the sideline, commended NGC for taking out time to explain to the people on the need for them not to e encroach on gas pipeline right of way.
He promised to carry the enlightenment campaign to all the nooks and crannies of Ajaokuta so that the people will know the dangers inherent in gas pipeline encroachment.
He said, “I want to thank NGC for this enlightenment campaign because most of our people live in rural communities and they don’t know that farming and building on gas pipeline right of way is very dangerous.”
The campaign train also hit Ohunene community, Ajaokuta, is in one of the community leaders, Alhaji Suleiman Sheid, relayed the message of NGC to his people in their dialect.