There has been serious panic in Ejigbo area of Lagos Mainland since Thursday morning, May 30, 2019, after vandals reportedly destroyed pipelines belonging to the NNPC pipelines, left it open after they had loaded petroleum products into about 15 tankers and escaped.
The petroleum products were seen flowing on the road and spreading to other streets in the area.
P.M.EXPRESS reports that the incident happened at Oboye Street in Ejigbo, where the pipelines which passed products to the other states of Nigeria were located.
According to some residents, the vandals stormed the place with men in soldiers’ uniform, who gave the bandits cover to break the pipes and siphon petroleum products. They were said to have stormed the place at about 1am with the trucks and some equipment. They reportedly damaged the pipes and started loading petroleum products into waiting tankers till 4am when information got to the police. By the time the police moved in, they have escaped and abandoned some of their equipment.
The Divisional Police Officer, CSP Olabisi Okuwobi, who personally led the operation, then contacted other relevant agencies to prevent fire outbreak in the area. Those present at the scene were Lagos Fire Service, Neighbourhood Watch, LASEMA, Officers of the Rapid Response Squad and the technical crew from the NNPC.
According to the
residents, it appeared that the operation was organised in such a way that it
seemed to be a conspiracy between some residents and the vandals on one hand
and the NNPC and the vandals on the other hand.
When P.M.EXPRESS correspondent visited the scene, the area had been barricaded with rope and members of the NNPC technical crew were busy trying to control the flow of the products.
The officers of the others agencies mentioned earlier were on red alert to guide against any disaster and aid the control of movement of the residents in the affected area.
However, two suspects
have been arrested over the incident and detained at the Ejigbo Police Station
where they were saying to be undergoing interrogation.
There was no official response on the incident at the scene as the agencies were very much busy with efforts to avert disaster.
Some of the equipment used by the vandals were recovered by the Police as exhibits.