Reports that security operatives have arrested some leaders of Oviri-Olomu Community in Ughelli South Local Government Area of Delta State over their alleged involvement in the vandalization of a major oil delivery pipeline in the community.
This is coming after the President General of the community, and others are said to be on the run for fear of arrests.
It was learned that those arrested include Chief Victor Onadiemor and Chief Austin Etata, Vice President General and the Secretary-General of Oviri-Olomu Community, respectively.
The arrests of the community leaders were made possible following an oil spill that affected the rivers, farmlands and destroyed other items in the community.
As a result, some indigenes and residents of the community raised the alarm and informed the security operatives who arrested the suspects for alleged vandalization of the pipeline.
The Delta State branch of the Committee for the Defence of Human Rights led by Comrade(Elder) A.Peter Edariese, in a statement signed and made available to DAILY POST, confirmed the arrests of the suspects.
He said,” Some of the key suspects, Chief Victor Onadiemor and Chief Austin Etata, who are the so-called Vice President General and the Secretary-General of the Community, have been arrested and now cooling down in detention with the Federal Government security forces.”
According to Comrade Edariese, the arrests of the suspects have brought an “air of relief to Oviri-Olomu Community” and its environs at the moment with great thanks to God almighty who made the feat. Possible.”
He said the suspects, with their family members and cronies, allegedly destroyed huge investments that would cost billions of naira to reconstruct.
“These so-called leaders appeared to have taken their criminality too far and by that ran foul of the laws of the Federation of Nigeria and the laws of nature and are now on the wanted list of the law-enforcement agencies of the Federal Government of Nigeria and the laws of God and so, have no place to hide anymore,” he said.
While noting that there is a vacuum in the community’s leadership, Comrade Edariese said investors should be careful and not deal with illegal persons in the name and generality of law-abiding citizens of the community, stressing that such will be an exercise in futility.
He also urged the Federal as well as the Delta State government to prevail on the asset owners, SPDC, to urgently take steps to carry out a complete mop-up of the oil spilled on the farmlands in Oviri-Olomu Community and its people to avoid the spread on the lands under the vandalization which took place as a result of the actions of the alleged vandals.
“Leaving it to spread would be a punishment to the generality of the Oviri-Olomu people who felt concerned about the evils perpetrated by our criminal brother’s and have taken a bold step to assist the authorities to arrest them and make them face justice for the sake of the progress and development of our Community and dear nation, Nigeria to avoid the destruction of the ecosystem which is capable of affecting economic activities of the people of Oviri-Olomu Community and their neighbors,” he said.
The pipeline, which was recently vandalized by hoodlums, is christened the 16 South Forcados Swampline Oil Delivery Pipeline.
The pipeline traversed approximately 35.293 hectares of land exclusively owned by Oviri-Olomu Community, for which the oil giant SPDC is currently owing to the community several millions of naira in compensation for crops destroyed and other properties destroyed and loss of use of the lands as at the time the land was acquired and the pipeline establishment in 1974.
The pipeline spanned from the Oviri-Olomu/Arhavwarien River and bound to the Ughievwen stream.