VENTURES AFRICA ‚Äì Nigeria‚Äôs second biggest oil producer, Chevron Nigeria, has been asked to leave the Escravos Terminal and Tank Farm in the Niger Delta or face having to deal with a deadly assault.
The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND), a feared radical military grouping in the area, threatened Chevron to vacate the area by early next month or face attack.
Nigerian newspaper, ThisDay quoted MEND in a statement as saying it would launch mortar assaults on the deadline day which is October 1 this year.
It said the attacks, which will be directed at the oil facility in the Niger Delta, will be at midnight on the day.
‚ÄúMEND is so far satisfied with the steady destructive progress of ‚ÄòHurricane Exodus‚Äô which has reduced Nigeria‚Äôs oil output significantly through our sustained sabotage of pipelines,‚Äù ThisDay quoted Jomo Gbomo, MEND spokesperson, as saying.
‚ÄúWe will also continue to turn a blind eye to the crude oil merchants passing through our territories because their activities, apart from toll paid us, are helping to achieve our objectives of zero oil output by 2015,‚Äù Gbomo continued in the statement.
In a chilling conclusion, MEND said it was advising workers at the facility to leave the premises too on the day.
Nigeria, Africa‚Äôs largest oil producer, may lose its top-ranking position issues of oil theft, vandalization and delay on the passage of the country‚Äôs Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) continues to take a heavy toll on oil production volumes.
Earlier in the year, the Project Manager, Nigerian Natural Resource Charter (NNRC), Ademola Oshodi, described the impact of the drop in production as ‚Äúreal.‚Äù