By Oladapo Okeowo
Men suspected to be militants, on Monday, vandalised the Trans-Niger pipeline in Ogoniland.
The pipeline destruction has set the country back by 150,000 barrels per day (bpd) at a time it, alongside Libya, is trying to get its production rate to move up.
The act of vandalism and its effect were disclosed by the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr Mikanti Baru.
He said Nigeria has been unable to have sustained production levels due to the destruction of pipelines in the Niger Delta region.
This was in response to questions of whether the nation is capable of sustaining the 2.2 million bpd crude production that it announced last week.
“Unfortunately, we have not been able to sustain it because we have challenges.
“As I am talking to you, this morning (Monday), the Trans-Niger pipeline has been breached in Ogoniland, and that is 150,000 barrels of oil that have been knocked off.
“That has been fairly an issue with that area. We hope we can continue our dialogue and this will return to what it should be,” he said.