wikileaks ico  Home papers ico  Cables mirror and Afghan War Diary privacy policy Privacy
Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
05LAGOS1956
2005-12-29 06:32:00
CONFIDENTIAL
Consulate Lagos
Cable title:  

ANOTHER PIPELINE EXPLOSION, SABOTAGE SUSPECTED BUT

Tags:   EPET  EINV  PGOV  ASEC  PTER  KHLS  EWWT  PINR  NI 
pdf how-to read a cable
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

290632Z Dec 05
						C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 LAGOS 001956 

SIPDIS

STATE PASS DOE FOR DAS JBRODMAN AND CGAY
STATE PASS TREASURY FOR ASEVERENS AND SRENENDER
STATE PASS DOC FOR PHUPER
STATE PASS TRANSPORTATION FOR MARAD
STATE PASS OPIC FOR CDUFFY
STATE PASS TDA FOR BTERNET
STATE PASS EXIM FOR JRICHTER
STATE PASS USTR FOR ASST USTR SLISER
STATE PASS USAID FOR GWEYNAND AND SLAWAETZ

E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/27/2015
TAGS: EPET EINV PGOV ASEC PTER KHLS EWWT PINR NI
SUBJECT: ANOTHER PIPELINE EXPLOSION, SABOTAGE SUSPECTED BUT
UNCONFIRMED

REF: A. LAGOS 1942


B. LAGOS 1933

Classified By: Consul General Brian L. Browne for Reasons 1.4 (D & E)

-------
Summary
-------



1. (U) As repairs continue on the pipelines ruptured in
last week's attack reported ref B, a section of pipeline
carrying refined product from the Nigerian National Petroleum
Company (NNPC) refinery in Warri, Delta State to locations
elsewhere in Nigeria suffered multiple explosions on December


26. Regarding last week's explosions, Shell Petroleum
Development Company (SPDC) reports clamping one of the
pipelines feeding their Opobo terminal and consequently
reducing estimated product loss to 15,000 barrels per day
(BPD). Shell expects to restore full production by January
1, 2006. End Summary.



--------------------------


Pipeline Explosion Reported Near Warri


--------------------------





2. (SBU) A pipeline serving NNPC's Warri refinery was
damaged in an attack on December 26. This pipeline runs
through Edo State and is the same line reported damaged ref


A. A spokesman for the Pipelines and Products Marketing
Company (PPMC) reported near simultaneous explosions on the
same pipeline and a possible attempted explosion at the
refinery itself. The PPMC official asserted that the series
of explosions indicated sabotage. However, a security
official for Halliburton told us bunkering was common along
this specific pipeline and that the explosion could have been
the result of this activity. The damaged pipeline delivers
fuel to several northern states through PPMC pumpstations in
Benin City, Edo State and Lokoja, a city near Abuja.



3. (SBU) NNPC confirmed the explosion and is working with
SPDC to extinguish the fire. For its part, NNPC would not
comment on whether the explosions looked more like failed
attempts at bunkering or targeted attacks.



--------------------------

--
SPDC Partially Recovers from December 20 Attack


--------------------------

--



4. (SBU) SPDC public relations officers explained that,
over the weekend, the company clamped a 24" pipeline pumping
oil from flow stations to their Opobo terminal. The company
has restored most of their operating capacity but is still
reporting a production loss of 15,000 BPD (Note. A vast
reduction from the roughly 180,000 BPD loss initially caused
by the mishap. End Note.)



5. (SBU) Still damaged are two pipelines, one serving the
Opobo terminal and a second bringing oil from the terminal to
the NNPC Warri refinery. SPDC representatives say the
cleanup has been ongoing and they are now looking at the
coming weekend to restore full operations. The force majeure
declared on December 21 is still in effect.



--------------------------


Investigations Pending


--------------------------





6. (C) SPDC Director of Corporate Relations Don Bonham said
the company is working closely with a panel established by
the Rivers State government to investigate the Opobo attack.
He said a federal investigation panel has also been
established but Shell has yet to begin work with that board.
The GON reportedly sent 2,000 soldiers to the Delta area to
improve security around the oil facilities. Bonham observed
the Niger Delta Peoples Volunteer Force (NDPVF) and various
other groups associated with arrested militant Dokubo Asari
have "disassociated themselves" from the suspected attacks.
(Comment. A group calling itself the Martyrs' Brigade and
claiming to be an offshoot of the NDPVF published a letter on
December 24 in which it took responsibility for the Opobo
explosions. End Comment.) He believes another group,
unaffiliated with the NDPVF, may be emerging.


7. (C) Nigerian Red Cross (NRC) Secretary General Abiodun
Orebiyi confirmed NRC volunteers were at all three sites
assisting in relief efforts to damaged communities and
injured individuals. He said exact numbers of people
affected had not been determined but predicted reliable
figures by December 29. He said many affected people in the
communities were hesitant to present themselves for fear of
being arrested as suspects.



--------------------------


Comment


--------------------------





8. (C) Bunkering in the Delta is common and expected.
However, some people believe the latest explosion and the
Opobo incident were not acts of errant bunkerers but of
purposeful saboteurs. NNPC officials remain silent regarding
possible suspects, and local police in both Edo and Delta
States are quoted as saying that the frequency of these
explosions is not common but "worrisome." If more accidents
of this nature occur, the weight of evidence would further
tip toward the conclusion that the pipelines are being
targetted. This will be a serious affront to the GON and
could materially affect oil production. We are maintaining
close contact with the oil companies in order to effectively
monitor this situation.
BROWNE