The Defence Headquarters on Thursday confirmed that armed men suspected to be members of a militant group in the Niger Delta attacked a major platform of Chevron Nigeria Limited.
Chevron, an operator of a joint venture with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), said the attack occurred at about 11.15 pm on Wednesday.
It is the latest in a series of attacks on oil facilities since President Muhammadu Buhari vowed to treat “vandals and saboteurs” in the region as terrorists.
“Its Okan offshore facility in the Western Niger Delta region was breached by unknown persons,” said Chevron in the statement.
“The facility is currently shut-in and we are assessing the situation, and have deployed resources to respond to a resulting spill,” the company added.
A group, the Niger Delta Avengers, which had earlier claimed responsibility for the sabotage a Shell Petroleum Development Company facility in the Forcados areas of Delta State, also took responsibility for the latest attack.
The group said in a statement signed by Madoch Agninibo, that it planned to attack other oil installations outside the Niger Delta in Abuja and Lagos as well as multinational oil companies operating in the Niger Delta, to pressurise government to meet their demands.
“This is what we promised the Nigeria Government. Since they have refused to listen to us, we are going to bring the country’s economy to zero.
“We want to pass this message to the all international oil companies operating in the Niger Delta that the Nigeria Military can’t protect your facilities. They should talk to the federal government to meet our demands else more mishaps will befall their installations.
“Not until our demands are met, no repair works should be done at the blast site. Whoever is going there for any repair work will be doing that at their detriment,” the group warned.
The militants group is asking for greater control of the oil revenues from the region.