Port Harcourt, Nigeria – South -South Nigeria Niger Delta militia group, the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) Thursday claimed responsibility for the attack on the oil facilities owned by the Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) and the Nigerian Agip Oil Company (NAOC) in Delta and Bayelsa State.
The militia group MEND in a statement by its spokesman, Gbomo Jomo stated that “at about 0300Hrs today Thursday, March 27, 2014, scuba divers from the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) revisited the Shell Forcados Sub-C pipeline in the Western Delta which we had sabotaged earlier on Saturday, March 01, 2014.”
“We were successful in causing further damage to the on-going repair works, inflicting the heaviest toll ever on the oil industry since the commencement of ‘Hurricane Exodus’. The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) also takes responsibility for the Thursday, March 20, 2014 attack on the Agip crude oil and gas pipelines in Ikarama Oil Fields located in Bayelsa State.”
Nogtec is still gathering more details from sources close to the militia group.
Meanwhile, Shell Nigeria this week declared “force majeure” on exports from its Forcados crude oil terminal that stopped operating on March 4 because of a leak in its undersea pipeline.
A Shell statement blamed thieves for the leak eight meters (26 feet) underwater in the Gulf of Guinea. This announcement of “superior force” effective from 9 a.m. (0800 GMT) Tuesday gives Nigeria’s biggest oil producer some legal protection against contractual obligations.
Shell did not say how much oil has not been exported because of the alleged sabotage. Forcados can handle 400,000 barrels of crude daily, more than a fifth of the 2.2 billion barrels produced in Nigeria.
The government says it loses about 200,000 barrels daily to oil thefts that had been limited to hacking into pipelines on land in the southern Niger Delta.