A group of gunmen reportedly invaded an operation site of an indigenous oil firm, Belemaoil, in the Akuku-Toru Local Government Area of Rivers State and abducted five oil workers. The gunmen had accosted their victims while they were working on an oil installation on the high sea before whisking them away in a speedboat.
A statement by the Public Relations Department of Belema Oil Producing Limited indicated that the workers were seized within the OML 55 operational area of the oil firm in Akuku-Toru.
According to the statement, the workers, who are contractors to Belemaoil, are personnel of Integrated Data Services Limited, a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, and a subsidiary of the China National Petroleum Corporation simply called BGP.
The statement read in part, “Report says five oil workers have been kidnapped by unknown gunmen within the OML-55 operational area of an indigenous oil company, Belemaoil Producing Limited, in the Akuku-Toru Local Government Area of Rivers State.”
“The oil workers are personnel of a subsidiary of the NNPC, Integrated Data Services Limited, and a subsidiary of the China National Petroleum Corporation, BGP, who are contractors of Belemaoil.”
“They were working at the site of the ongoing seismic operation by Belemaoil when they were abducted on Monday, May 13, 2019. The report said the incident has been reported to the security agencies.”
In his reaction, the Chairman, Kula Supreme Council of Traditional Rulers, King Kroma Eleki, decried the abduction of the oil workers.
The monarch described the incident as being detrimental to the growth of the area and called for the immediate and unconditional release of the victims. Eleki also expressed the need for improved security along the Kula waterways.
The state Police Public Relations Officer, Mr Nnamdi Omoni, confirmed the incident, adding that the police had launched a manhunt for the hoodlums behind the abduction of the oil workers.
Promising that the victims will be released unhurt, Omoni, said, “We are aware of the incident. The state Commissioner of Police, Usman Belel, has ordered a serious manhunt to ensure that the victims are released unhurt and unconditionally.”
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