General NewsOil & Gas

Hoodlums attack Shell gas pipeline in Bayelsa

The peace of Ikarama and Kalaba communities in Yenagoa Local Government Area of Bayelsa State was violated, on Monday, as some unidentified persons, using dynamites, attacked a gas pipeline allegedly owned by Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) in the area, causing gas leakage.

The attack on the gas pipeline, it was learned, occurred between 8 am and 8.30 am in Ikarama community, over the time, has been listed as having the highest frequency of documented crude oil spills in the state.

Though no group has claimed responsibility for the latest attack on the facility in Ikarama, community sources told the Tribune Online that the area was rocked by four explosions, shaking buildings in the area.

The gas pipeline, it was learned, is linking the company’s Adibawa flow station at JK4 (Edagberi/Betterland) in Ahoada West local government area of Rivers State and Shell-operated integrated gas gathering plant at Obunagha in Yenagoa Local Government Area of Bayelsa.

A former Community Development Committee, CDC, member of Ikarama, Chief Washington Douglas, who confirmed the incident said, “This morning I was in my house when we heard the first explosion at about 8 am just as we were about going out to check, we heard another explosion.

“As I ask what was happening, two other explosions followed. This happened between 8 am and 9 am. It was like a powerful earth tremor, buildings were shaking and there was pandemonium in the community,” he added.

He further explained that after some hours, “we saw a helicopter usually used by Shell personnel hovering around the scene where the sound of the explosions came from deep in the forest and later flew away. Thereafter soldiers and officials of the company were seen driving into the community and heading towards the impacted area.”

Chief Douglas also said that the community had earlier contacted ERA and FoEN about the disturbing event.

ERA/FoEN had in a post stated that the situation “is now affecting local farmers as they are scared to access their farmlands for planting, especially as some would be going with a live coal to burn their cleared farms.

“The people are very apprehensive; even as the explosion has continued. Community folks confirmed to ERA that, apart from the frightening sound of the explosions; they could hear the hissing sound of the gas spewing into the environment.

“This gas pipeline supplies the Integrated gas gathering plant at Obunagha with Gas from shell operated Oil wells In Biseni and JK4, a major line.”

A spokesperson for The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited, Mr Michael Adande said:

“We have a report of interference on our pipeline about 1 kilometre from Ikarama Community in Bayelsa State. We immediately shut-in the line and we have informed the relevant regulatory government agencies and stakeholders. A government-led joint investigation team will determine the cause of the interference.”


Nigerian Tribune


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