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Explosion from vandalised fuel pipeline kills 20 in Rivers



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The tragic incident from an illegal oil tapping point in Omoku, Ogba/Egebema/Ndoni LGA of Rivers State, has resulted in the loss of at least 20 lives. The event occurred on a Sunday morning when youths reportedly vandalized a pipeline owned by a multinational oil firm in the area. The individuals began collecting fuel using jerry cans and buckets, leading to a devastating explosion. Alongside the fatalities, numerous individuals sustained burns and are undergoing treatment in various local hospitals.

One eyewitness revealed that the inferno erupted due to suspected oil thieves attempting to ignite mosquito coils near the leaked fuel. Emeka Ukwuosah, the chairman of Niger Delta Youth Movement, ONELGA chapter, condemned the ongoing oil bunkering activities, urging the youth to engage in more constructive endeavors and abandon illegal activities like oil theft. Meanwhile, the Assistant Secretary of a vigilante group, Onelga Security Peace Advisory Council, Emeka Agbabere, attributed the incident to illegal oil bunkering, expressing disappointment over the lack of success in discouraging such activities despite repeated campaigns.

Despite this tragic occurrence, the incident had not been reported to the state police command at the time of inquiry, according to the spokesperson, Grace Iringe-Koko. As of the report’s filing, there was no update from the police department regarding the incident.

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