Nigerian president orders to combat militants in Niger Delta

Published on Saturday 21st June 2008

Lagos (Nigeria): Nigeria's President Umaru Yar'Adua on Friday in Abuja ordered an offensive on the militants in the Niger Delta, warning them to get ready to face the full consequences of taking up arms against the Federal Republic of Nigeria, according to local media report on Saturday.


Olusegun Adeniyi, special adviser to the president on communication said the president gave the directive to the Nigerian Armed Forces and security agencies in an angry response to Thursday 's attacks on the multi-million U. S. dollars Bonga and Pennington Oil Fields of the Shell Petroleum Development Company.

Yar'Adua, in a clear departure from the prevailing practice of handling the militants with kid gloves, said his government would not shirk from its constitutional responsibility for law and order and safety of lives and property across the country.

He directed the Armed Forces and security agencies to take all necessary actions to apprehend the militants behind the attack, which he described as "national sabotage."

The Nigerian Armed Forces and other relevant outfits were also directed to beef up security at all oil facilities to forestall further attacks.

The presidency said militant activities were undermining efforts aimed at addressing the huge developmental challenges in the oil rich Niger Delta region.

"The federal government wholly condemns Thursday's attack on the Bonga Oil Field operated by the Shell Petroleum Development Company," he said.