One of the militant groups in the Niger Delta region, Greenland Justice Mandate, has warned Shell and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation not to reopen the Trans Forcados pipeline in Burutu Local Government Area of Delta State pending a directive from it telling them to do so.
The group in a statement on Saturday issued by its spokesman, Aldo Agbalaja, said, ‘‘Trans Forcados crude is under force majeure from operator Shell since a militant attack on the subsea pipeline in February and it is due to resume operation this week following the completion of repair works and maintenance.
“We do not have much to say to the oil companies than to just dare them to reopen the Trans-Forcados pipeline. We are aware that you are experts at testing wills, especially as you believe that you have a military shield. Please, go ahead to restart the facility and see what will happen.’’
It also warned the Federal Government not to go ahead with the October 29 meeting with the Chief Edwin Clark-led Pan-Niger Delta Dialogue Team, adding that the team must not negotiate on its behalf.
According to it, the Clark-led Niger Delta leaders lack both the moral right and trust to speak for the region.
Stating that it had nothing personal against members of the team, it added that it would be a grave mistake for the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government to discuss the future of the region with the same group of persons responsible for the “current parlous state of the region.”
It urged the Federal Government to await its list of credible and trusted community leaders, including traditional rulers from the various ethnic groups in the region for the proposed dialogue.
It added, “We thought we should not continue to ignore the grand error being orchestrated by those who are responsible for the current parlous state of the Niger Delta region. These people seem to have succeeded in bewitching and railroading the Federal Government into settling for a dialogue with them in the name of the Niger Delta people.’’