The Joint Military Force deployed to the Niger-Delta, Operation Delta Safe, says it has arrested two militants who are masterminds of recent attacks on oil infrastructure in the region.
Commander of Operation Delta Safe Rear Adm. Suileman Apochi presented the suspects to newsmen on Thursday in Yenagoa.
According to Apochi, the suspected militants are popularly identified as ‘General Eagle’ and ‘General VIP’ in the creeks.
He said the arrest of the suspects, who had admitted to be the brains behind attacks at Agip oilfields in Bayelsa, was due to the tenacity of operations launched against vandals by the joint force.
The commander noted that the activities of the duo were responsible for the slump in oil output, following several attacks and threats to oil firms to succumb to their demands.
“I am glad to announce that two notorious kingpins, identified as General Eagle’ and ‘General VIP, have been apprehended and from interrogation, they had admitted to committing several crimes.
“The criminals and their group have at various times masterminded the destruction of oil infrastructure and sabotage to the economy.
“They have engaged in illegal bunkering and kidnap of high profile victims.
“The self-acclaimed ‘General Eagle’ said he recently organised and blew up one of the oil company’s risers at Golubokin along Obama-Brass pipeline in Bayelsa.
“He also claimed responsibility in the planting of explosives at Agip oilfields.”
The commander said preliminary investigations had uncovered threats by text messages to oil firms and their staff to carry out more attacks if their demands for financial gratifications were not met.
He then advised aggrieved groups to take advantage of the federal government’s windows of opportunities to amicably resolve grievances rather than resorting to criminal acts.