Nigeria: Militants, ExxonMobil in Tug of Words

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  • We blew up ExxonMobil pipeline–NDA
  • No you didn’t – ExxonMobil Corp

Events in Nigeria’s oil sector is taking a rather curios turn as claims by rampaging militants in the country’s creeks of blowing up the Qua Iboe crude oil export terminal known to be operated by Exxon Mobil Corp has been vehemently refuted by the company as false.

Late Monday a statement posted on the website of the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA), a militant group that has been so adept at destroying oil facilities in Nigeria with the use of dynamites, claimed it had struck another facility belonging to Mobil, but in a swift response, Mobil on Tuesday said there had been no attack on any of its facilities.

“At about 7:30pm the Niger Delta Avengers blew up ExxonMobil Qua Iboe 48″ crude oil export pipeline. When will these International Oil companies (IOC) learn to listen. We (Niger Delta Avengers) said no export,” the terse statement signed by a Brig.Gen Mudoch Agbinibo read.

On Tuesday however, Exxon Mobil Corp said through its spokesman Todd Spitler, that no attacks had taken place at its facilities.

“There were no attacks on our facilities,” he said.

 

Security forces have not come out to verify the claims by both parties yet and it is still unclear if an attack had actually taken place or not.

This is not the first time ExxonMobil will be refuting claims of disruptions from security threats at the Qua Iboeterminal.

 

In May this year there were media reports that Qua Iboe which is Nigeria’s largest crude oil stream and exports usually more than 300,000 barrels per day had been evacuated due to heightened threats from the NDA.

 

However, the management of Exxon Mobil, in a counter claim said production was ongoing at Qua Iboe crude oil terminal, despite criminal activity that obstructed staff access to a bridge leading to the terminal.

Exxon Mobil was later to cut Qua Iboe production and declared force majeure on exports, claiming that a drilling rig was experiencing mechanical difficulties and had damaged the pipeline it jointly owns with the state-owned Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC.

Production was however ramped up the following week.

 

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