No hiding place for terrorism sponsors, members of Boko Haram – Jonathan

Suleja – President Goodluck Jonathan on Saturday pledged that there would be no hiding place for sponsors of members of the terrorist group, `Boko Haram’ which had claimed responsibilities for a number of terror attacks in the country.

The president stated this shortly after he inspected the Christmas day bombs explosion site at the St. Theresa’s Catholic Church, Madalla, Niger State.

Jonathan said there would be no sacred cow in the fight against the terrorist group and their sponsors.

He said his government had reviewed the activities of the group and would begin implementing new measures to contain their activities.

Specifically, Jonathan said that he would take some decisive measures in some places in the country that were notorious with Boko Haram attacks including Suleja Local Government Area in Niger State.

“ We’ll begin from tonight take some different measures, different approach to fighting `Boko Haram’ and we must weed them out of our society.

“But Suleja is a particular local government that is becoming very notorious in terms of terrorism.

“All the terrorist attacks in Niger State had taken place in Suleja. Luckily the chairman of council is here.

“I am going to turn this local government upside down. If there are institutions here that are harbouring criminality we are going to deal with it decisively.

“Niger State is a very big state and any terrorist attack is in Suleja, so my belief is that there are some institutions or individuals in Suleja that are harbouring terrorists and we’ll deal with it decisively.

“And any part of this country; any individual or group of individuals, whether traditional institutions or religious institutions associated with terrorists will be dealt with decisively. There will be no sacred cows.’’

The president promised that he would give the nation details on how he planned to contain the group.

He condoled with the Catholic Church, the government and people of Niger State over the Christmas day attack and assured that his government would do everything possible to protect lives and property.

Jonathan said he had not visited the site of the bomb explosions earlier in order not to disrupt investigations being carried out by security agencies.

Niger State governor, Babangida Aliyu, who was at the bomb site to receive President Jonathan, said that he was happy with the resolve of the Federal Government to contain Boko Haram.

He said Suleja was notorious for terrorism because of its proximity to Abuja adding that the state would welcome any step taken by the Federal Government to address the problem.

The governor said that the committee he set up on compensation for victims of the Christmas day explosions had concluded work and that he would be making its recommendations public on Jan. 2, 2012.

Aliyu said government would assess the extent of damage done to property on the day of explosion and compensate victims.

Earlier, the parish priest of the church, Rev. Fr. Isaac Achi thanked the president for the visit and assured him of the cooperation of his parishioners.

Achi said the parishioners had forgiven the perpetrators of the dastardly act which left dozens of the church’s members dead and wounded and many of their properties damaged. (NAN)

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No hiding place for terrorism sponsors, members of Boko Haram – Jonathan

2012: Jonathan assures on security, improved living standard

Abuja – President Goodluck Jonathan, Sunday,  assured Nigerians of improved living conditions and security of lives and property in 2012 and beyond. The President gave the assurance in his New Year message to the nation.

He urged Nigerians not to lose hope because of current challenges facing the nation, noting that his government was prepared to address them. “I urge our people to reject despair and embrace hope and optimism. We are a strong and resilient people. We have overcome all previous challenges to our nationhood and national well-being.

He said: “With unity of purpose and national solidarity, we will certainly overcome terrorism and other current challenges.

“With the support and cooperation of our patriotic compatriots, my administration will intensify its efforts to ensure the safety of lives and property in Nigeria this new year as we have already signaled in our 2012 budget proposals. “We will also continue to make progress in improving the living conditions of all Nigerians in 2012 with effective interventions in key areas.’’

The president noted that in spite of the challenges of the out-gone year, the country made remarkable and positive developments. Jonathan said that Nigeria’s democracy had been strengthened and globally recognised  with the conduct of free, fair and credible general elections in 2011.

He said his administration had also developed and begun the implementation of a purposeful and focused agenda for national transformation. The president said he had established teams of “dedicated and capable’’ Nigerians to drive the plans to achieve significant progress in priority areas such as power, infrastructure, industrialisation, agricultural development, education  and employment generation.

He said the implementation of the amnesty programme in the Niger Delt had fully restored peace to the region and boosted the production and export of crude oil which had plunged to record lows in the dark days of militant agitations. Jonathan, however, expressed regret at the spate of terrorist attacks in the past year which he said had threatened national security.

“As we enter a new year, I wish to reassure Nigerians that my administration will neither be distracted nor deterred from the effective implementation of its agenda for national growth and development by present challenges.

“We shall vigorously confront and defeat the menace of terrorism in our country and work with our friends in the international community to eliminate this new threat to global peace and security.’’ Jonathan wished all Nigerians happy celebrations and prosperous new year.

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2012: Jonathan assures on security, improved living standard

Nigeria: Aiyegbeni Hails Rovers’ Old Trafford Victory



This Day (Lagos)

Tunde Sulaiman

31 December 2011


Blackburn Rovers’ two-goal hero, Yakubu Aiyegbeni hailed the performance of his side in their stunning 3-2 upset win over champions Manchester United at Old Trafford on Saturday.

Although the day was supposed to be a special one for Sir Alex Ferguson being the United boss’ 70th birthday, Rovers’ were clearly not in celebration mood as they inflicted only the second defeat on the Red Devils this season.

Rovers’ Nigerian hit man got the ball rolling when after weathering the initial United onslaught, the visitors took the lead with only their fist foray into the home team’s box when Dimitar Berbatov was adjudged to have fouled Christopher Samba in the 16th minute to give a way a penalty, which Aiyegbeni coolly slotted home past David de Gea.

Things were to get worse for the home side when in the 51st minute the Super Eagles outcast beat of the weak challenges from Rafael and Michael Carrick to blast the ball past de Gea.

However, barely 20 seconds after going two goals down, United were back in it when Berbatov nodded in from close range.

The Bulgarian, who scored five in the 7-1 demolition the last time both teams met, was again on target 10 minutes later when he rifled home a fine cross from Antonio Valencia.

But rather than building on this fight back, question marks around the goalkeeping ability of De Gea will once again be asked after the Spaniard flapped at a corner kick to allow Grant Hanley head home his first goal of the season.

Try as United did they just could not find a way back to slump to their second home defeat of the season and allow the title race pendulum swing back in Manchester City’s favour.

Had United even drawn with Rovers they would have led the table at least for 24 hours until City play Sunderland on Sunday afternoon.

However, speaking after the game, Aiyegbeni said he was delighted that the team as a whole had been able to win for their beleaguered manager, Steve Kean.

“It is not easy coming here (Old Trafford) to win. I’m happy that we did because at least it will take some pressure of the manager and even us as players,” said Aiyegbeni, whose brace took him to 12 for the season and is bound to increase calls for Super Eagles coach, Stephen Keshi to end his national team wilderness.

Speaking alongside the Nigerian, Hanley said they were confident that they would not be relegated at the end of the season.

The win took Rovers, Premier League winners in 1995, three places off the bottom of the table for the first time in weeks and follows last week’s battling 1-1 draw with Liverpool.

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Somalia: Puntland Clan Blames Al Shabaab for Scholar’s Killing



Garowe Online (Garowe)

31 December 2011


Galdogob — A Somali clan in the northern region of Puntland has issued a public statement signed by 21 traditional elders and community leaders blaming Al Shabaab terror group for the killing of an Islamic scholar earlier this month, Radio Garowe reports.

The public statement was released in Galdogob town, in Puntland’s Mudug region, on 30 Dec 2011 and signed by community leaders of Leelkase (Darod) clan, led by Ugas Ali Ugas Mohamed, the chief of elders.

The statement contained 9-points, stating that the Leelkase clan nominated an independent committee to investigate the killing of Dr. Ahmed Haji Abdirahman, who was gunned down in the Puntland port city of Bossaso on 5 Dec 2011.

On Friday, Puntland Security Minister Kalif Isse Mudan told a press conference in Bossaso that Puntland security services have arrested seven persons in connection with the killing of Dr. Ahmed Haji Abdirahman.

READ: Scholar’s killers have been caught, says Puntland Security Minister

The public statement sent condolences to the Somali people and thanked everyone who helped and offered their prayers.

The statement noted that the Puntland government and the Islamic scholars in Puntland State have separately blamed Al Shabaab terror group for murdering the scholar, Dr. Ahmed Haji Abdirahman.

Point 2 states that the Leelkase clan viewed the decision by the Puntland government and the Islamic scholars to blame Al Shabaab group was “quick judgment” and therefore nominated an independent committee to investigate the crime.

Point 6 states: “The Leelkase clan is confirming to the Somali people and to Muslims worldwide that the unjust and intentional killing of Dr. Ahmed Haji Abdirahman was carried out and organized by Al Shabaab group, particularly the Amniyaat group led by Ahmed Abdi Godane.”

The statement continues on to say that the Leelkase clan has reached a collective decision to not respond in kind to the scholar’s killing, adding that the clan will be satisfied with an Islamic ruling on the case.

It is the first time that a Somali clan has publicly blamed Al Shabaab for killing notable persons in Somalia. Puntland government officials blame Al Shabaab for a string of assassinations and bombings in Puntland’s major towns targeting government officials, community leaders, journalists, businesspersons and activists.

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Somalia: Govt Forces Seize Key Town as Residents Flee



Garowe Online (Garowe)

31 December 2011


Beledweyne — Government forces loyal to Somalia’s Transitional Federal Government (TFG) have attacked and seized control of a key town in central Somalia, Radio Garowe reports.

TFG forces launched a daybreak attack Saturday on the positions of Al Qaeda-affiliated Al Shabaab fighters in the outskirts of Beledweyne, provincial capital of Hiran region.

“Fighting erupted this morning. We could hear the sound of heavy gunfire outside of Beleweyne and then Al Shabaab fighters withdrew. There are soldiers inside Beledweyne. Many residents are fleeing the town,” said a resident who did not want to be identified in print.

Some reports said Ethiopian troops operating along the Ethiopia-Somalia border conducted military maneuvers, as TFG forces pushed into Beledweyne.

Al Shabaab militants have controlled Beledweyne since 2009. TFG forces based near the Ethiopia-Somalia boundary have been building forces using an alliance with local clan militias to dislodge Al Shabaab from Beledweyne.

Local sources report Al Shabaab fighters reteated to Bulo Burte, a district southeast of Beledweyne. Many wounded fighters were taken to Bulo Burte for treatment, sources added.

Since retreating from most of Mogadishu last August, Al Shabaab fighters have been loosing ground in central and southern regions of Somalia. The UN-backed TFG in Mogadishu is supported by a 10,000-strong African Union peacekeeping force (AMISOM) in the fight to defeat Al Shabaab terror group and restore governance in Mogadishu.

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Somalia: Ethiopian, Govt Troops Take Key City From Militants



Radio Netherlands Worldwide (Hilversum)

31 December 2011


Ethiopian troops and Somali government forces seized control of a key Somali city on Saturday after battling Islamist rebels on the outskirts, leaving at least 18 dead, sources said.

The city, Beledweyne, lies some 30 kilometres (18 miles) from the Ethiopian border.

“The fighting started this morning after our forces supported by the Ethiopian military attacked the enemy’s positions on the outskirts of Beledweyne,” Bare Abdulahi, a Somali government security official, said from the scene.

“They lost in the battle and we have penetrated into their barracks killing nearly 20 of their fighters before taking control of the city. The Somali government forces alone entered the city and they are securing it now,” he added.

“We have counted around 18 dead bodies, most of them the combatants, some of them have died outside the city and others are lying in the streets of Beledweyne,” Mohamed Moalim Osmail, an elder in the city, confirmed to AFP.

“I saw some Somali government troops accompanied by armed trucks belonging to the Ethiopian forces, they have entered the city and the fighting has stopped now”, Abdirahman Isa, another witness said.

Ãè have seen nearly 20 dead bodies strewn in the streets and outside the town, most of them are combatants but a few civilians were also caught in the crossfire,” he added.

The Al-Qaeda-linked Shebab rebel movement denied having been defeated in the city.

“The enemy tried to destroy the frontline barracks of the mujahideen fighters but they lost in the battle, we killed many of them and the mujahideen fighters have retreated back from some positions in order to reorganise their strategy”, Abu Musab told reporters in Mogadishu.

Residents said that several hundred Ethiopian troops on November 19 crossed into Somalia’s central Galgudud and Hiran regions, but Addis Ababa dismissed the reports as “absolutely not true.” – ANP/AFP

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South Sudan: 3,000 Youths Attack Town in Ethnic Clash



Sudan Tribune (Paris)

31 December 2011


Juba — Armed members of the Lou-Nuer ethnic group today attacked Pibor town, home of the Murle tribe, in defiance of efforts by senior politicians to diffuse tension in Jonglei state’s Pibor county.

Vice President, Riek Machar, and other senior members of the South Sudanese government met with the leaders of both groups this week to try and prevent further violence.

Around 3,000 youth entered Pibor town today setting fire to houses, according to acting Pibor county commissioner Allan Keriri.

Eyewitnesses told Sudan Tribune that the Luo-Nuer youth control most of the town including the airport. They have made the main county hospital their base inside the town.

Machar, was still in the previously captured Likwangole town trying to negotiate with the Luo-Nuer youth by phone when the attack occurred.

The youth who entered the town at around 3pm said they will continue to capture other Murle areas in search of 180 Luo-Nuer children they claim the Murle abducted in August.

The Luo-Nuer say there offensive is in response to an attack in August, blaimed on the Murle, in which more than 700 of their members, mostly women and children, by armed youth from the Murle community in a village called Pieri in August.

This year over 1,000 people have died in Jonglei state in reciprocal attacks, which began as cattle raids but have escalated into retaliatory violence along ethnic lines.

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Kenya: Police Name 15 Key Shabaab Fugitives



The Nation (Nairobi)

Zaddock Angira

31 December 2011


Police have released the names of 15 men they believe hold key information that could help unravel the Al-Shabaab militia.

The suspects are said to have left Kismayu recently for Kenya and some are believed to be already in the country. The group comprises nine Kenyans, two Asians and four Somalis aged between 24 and 32.

Most of the Kenyans are known to have resided in Majengo area of Nairobi and Mombasa before leaving for Somalia about a year ago.

“If any of these people is in Kenya, they are advised to report to the nearest police station,” said Police Spokesman Eric Kiraithe.

He also urged any person who sees any of them or has information on their whereabouts to inform police.

One of the suspects is Habib Saleh Ghani aka Abu Usama Al-Pakistani, a Briton.

The others, some only known by only one name, are Abdi Samadi Wadud aka Asu, Ali Hashim Muhogo, Amar, Bashir, Budalangi, Erico, Farhan Ayub, Jamadar, Juma Ayub, Amar, Mwarabu, Ramadhan Kioko, Sufiyan and Habib Saleh.

Police have also released the name of Baba Nawal, suspected to have been involved in the kidnapping of a disabled French woman who was abducted in Lamu in October.

Another suspect wanted by police is Natalie Fayed, holder of passport number A 0152478 who is said to have entered Kenya through Lunga Lunga border crossing on February 26, and also came in on August 25, through Namanga.

She is in the company of her three children one girl and two boys aged 10, 8 and 5.

Police have also confirmed that GSU officers killed three suspected Al-Shabaab militants and recovered five AK-47 rifles, two speedboats, 14 magazines and 372 bullets on Saturday morning.

Kiwayu area

The officers, who were on patrol, saw an unidentified boat approaching the Kenyan territorial waters at around 6.30am on Friday morning at Kiwayu area of Lamu. They gave chase but the suspects sped and abandoned the boat and disappeared into the Mukokoni forest.

On Saturday at around 9am the GSU officers from the ‘L’ company now based at Kiunga found the armed men and a fierce exchange ensued.

In the process, three of the suspects were killed and three others escaped with gunshot injuries.

“There were no casualties among the security agents,” said Mr Kiraithe.

Meanwhile, police have banned all fireworks as they intensify security patrols and at the same time urged the public to liaise with their local police on security arrangements before they organise or attend any gatherings.

Mr Kiraithe, however, stressed that he was satisfied with the security situation in the country and the police would not ban gatherings.

Mr Kiraithe has at the same time warned refugees who engage in criminal activities that stern action will be taken against them. There have been cases of criminal activities within the refugee camps.

On Thursday night, a refugee leader, Ahmed Mohamud, was shot dead as he was entering his compound at the Hagadera refugee camp.

Ahmed was the chairperson of the Community Peace and Security Team — a refugee-run community group — said to be instrumental in maintaining security in the camp.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) AntÃ’nio Guterres has also condemned the killing of the leader.

In the North Eastern province, the security forces are on high alert after intelligence reports showed that improvised explosive devices (IED) experts from Bulla Hawa town in Southern Somalia had crossed to Mandera on Friday.

The experts are allegedly training people in buildings near Kenya Customs control.

The intelligence report further states that the militants’ main targets are the State security forces especially in Mandera.

Addressing the media during the briefing on the war against Al-Shabaab, Military Spokesman Colonel Cyrus Oguna said the Al-Shabaab suffered the highest number of casualties in the last one week.

He said that the KDF gained more ground on the Northern sector and close to 6,000 residents had moved back to their original homes.

On Thursday, five militants and one KDF soldier were killed, and five other KDF soldiers injured following a ground engagement.

Improvised explosive

Col Oguna said that the previous day, a KDF vehicle drove over an IED and, as a result, four soldiers were injured and the vehicle slightly damaged.

The largest number of casualties occurred on Christmas day when the forces killed around 100 members including some foreign fighters.

Earlier on December 24, the KDF raided a customs office and killed six and wounded eight Al-Shabaab members and also destroyed a technical (vehicle used by the militants).

Col Oguna added that the forces had blocked the charcoal trade as part of their strategy to ensure that Al-Shabaab are starved of cash and also to check on environmental degradation.

Regarding the US stoppage of financial transactions from the diaspora, Col Oguna welcomed the move though he said it did not significantly contribute to the success of their operation.

“Al-Shabaab has never been funded from the diaspora and that is why we are concentrating on blocking their sources of income within,” said Oguna.

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Nigeria: Jonathan Declares Emergency in Four States



This Day (Lagos)

Ahamefula Ogbu

31 December 2011


President Goodluck Jonathan has declared State of Emergency in 15 Local Government Areas in four States where there are endemic activities of terror groups.

He also ordered the closure of Nigerian borders through the Local Governments in Borno, Niger, Yobe and Plateau.

He stated in a nationwide broadcast that the areas were notorious for terrorist attacks while the borders closed are believed to be places through which the terrorist groups pass through to carry out attacks as well as pass through them to hide.

He invoked section 305(1) of the 1999 Constitution to declare the State of emergency in the Local Government Areas, adding that he will send the names of the affected LGs to the National Assembly for necessary action.

The list of the states and Local Government Areas affected are:

(i) Borno State

a) Maidugiri Metropolitan LGA

b) Gamboru Ngala LGA

c) Banki Bama LGA

d) Biu LGA

e) Jere LGA

(ii) Yobe State

a) Damaturu LGA

b) Geidam LGA

c) Potiskum LGA

d) Buniyadi-Gujba LGA

e) Gasua-Bade LGA

(iii) Plateau State

a) Jos North LGA

b) Jos South LGA

c) Barkin-Ladi LGA

d) Riyom LGA

(iv) Niger State

a) Suleja LGA

Jonathan explained that recent activities of the terror groups have become a collective threat on the safety and corporate existence of the nation which has prompted the drastic action he took, which according to him, does not negate the protocols on free movement with neighbouring States.

He noted that what began as sectarian crises in the North East gradually festered and evolved into terrorist activities with dire consequences to national security which while he was still taking measures to check, bloomed into dimensions and affected vital institutions of government, places of worship and the United Nations Building.

“While the search for lasting solutions is on-going, it has become imperative to take some decisive measures necessary to restore normalcy in the country especially within the affected communities.

Consequently, I have in the exercise of the powers conferred on me by the provisions of section 305(1) of the Constitution, declared a state of emergency in the following parts of the federation.

“The details of this proclamation will be transmitted to the National Assembly as soon as they reconvene from their current recess, for their necessary action.

“The Chief of Defence Staff and the Inspector-General of Police have been directed to put appropriate measures in place to ensure the protection of lives and properties of residents in the affected parts of the country. I therefore urge the political leadership in the affected states and Local Government Areas to give maximum cooperation to the law enforcement agencies deployed to their respective communities to ensure that the situation is brought under control within the shortest possible time.

“The Chief of Defence Staff, in collaboration with other Service Chiefs, has also been directed to set up a special force unit within the Armed Forces, with dedicated counter terrorism responsibilities.

“As part of the overall strategy to overcome the current security challenges, I have directed the closure of the land borders contiguous to the affected Local Government Areas so as to control incidences of cross boarder terrorist activities as terrorists have taken advantage of the present situation to strike at targets in Nigeria and retreat beyond the reach of our law enforcement personnel.

“Let me assure our neighbours, especially within the ECOWAS sub-region, of Nigeria’s commitment to its international obligations as provided by the ECOWAS Protocol on Free Movement of Persons. The temporary closure of our borders in the affected areas is only an interim measure designed to address the current security challenges and will be reviewed as soon as normalcy is restored”, Jonathan declared.

He commended the efforts of political and religious leaders who have been working to achieve peaceful conflict resolution of the crises that followed the various attacks and assured them that he would strive to ensure that the situation is arrested.

“Terrorism is a war against all of us. I call on all Nigerians to join hands with government to fight these terrorists”, he said.

Making clarifications on the declaration, the National Security Adviser, General Owoye Azazi said the situation would lead to the creation of Special Forces which will enable training and arming of a special group which he said would be more effective.

He admitted that it will give sweeping powers to those deployed to the affected LGs to search and arrest people suspected to have hands in the activities of the group. They would be arrested and their properties searched without warrant.

He said the emergency state will last till normalcy returns to the affected areas.

Asked if the group would not move to new areas, he replied that the reasoning was that it would be difficult for them to move into new areas when the awareness of their activities was common place.

He said that democratic structures would still stand while they will monitor areas where there are threats of attacks.

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Bonga oil spill: Senate c’ttee okay with clean up

BY KUNLE KALEJAYE

Chairman Senate Committee on Environment, Senator Bukola Saraki has expressed satisfaction on the prompt and effective way  Shell responded on the Bonga oil spill.

Senator Saraki told journalist on his arrival from the oil facility which lies 120km southwest of the Niger Delta, in a water depth of over 1,000m with members of the committee that the committee is impressed with what shell has done.

The chairman said “ we just came back from the oil facility of Bonga where the oil toke place and the executives committee saw that a lot of work has been done by shell to curtail the oil spill and they were able to respond because they are up to the task and that is what we expect from other oil companies that are operating in Nigeria”.

“We have also witness a third party oil spill but we cannot say if it from Bonga or not but the third party oil spill has reached the shore line. But we want to appeal the communities that are affected to allow for a proper investigation and test to be carried out in order to ascertain the source of the third oil spill. We want to ensure that as a committee that we bring home the best international standard in dealing with issues like this” he said.

Vice chairman of the committee Professor Ben Ayade noted that oil spills on the shore of the Niger Delta region are not crude, some of them are refine products added that shell has done the right thing and has to be commended for their

Oil Spill

prompt response.

It was earlier reported that The Minister of Environment Hajia Hadiza Ibrahim Mailafia indicated that the Bonga oil spill that occurred on the 20thof December 2011 will require six weeks for a complete clean up.

Mailafia who inspected of the oil spill which lies 120km southwest of the Niger Delta, in a water depth of over 1,000m by the joint team of the ministry, Shell, NOSDRA, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, Nigeria Immigration Service, Nigeria Customs Service and other technical partners said:

“For a complete clean up, we are looking at six weeks and to put things under control. We have brought in experts and we currently have seven vessels, two air craft and two helicopters that are making use of dispersants to clean the massive oil spill at the Bonga deepwater offshore facility and to ensure that the spill does not reach the shore line”.

She also added that shell has been cooperating with the ministry of environment, the National Oil Spill Detective Response Agency (NOSDRA) and the Marine tine Safety department.

Mailafia commended shell for giving out accurate report on the total amount oil spilled (40 thousand barrels of oil) and for their quick response to the spill adding that proper investigation will be carried out to ascertain the cause of the oil spill.

The Minister admitted that the spill will affect aquatic life but effort are in place to ensure that the spill does not hit the shore line adding that the Nigerian Custom and Immigration has been helpful since the incident occurred on Tuesday last week.

The minister, the Director-General, NOSDRA, Sir Peter Idabor, and the Deputy Director, NIMASA, Captain Warredi Enisuoh, flew offshore to review clean-up efforts in response to the Bonga oil leak.

Bonga is the first deepwater project for the Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company (SNEPCO) and for Nigeria. The discovery well is located in oil prospecting license (OPL) 212, which was awarded during Nigeria’s first round of deepwater frontier acreage awards in 1993.

SNEPCO operates the field on behalf of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) under a production sharing contract, in partnership with Esso (20%), Nigeria Agip (12.5%) and Elf Petroleum Nigeria Limited (12.5%).

Crude oil production from the field started in November 2005 and the first shipment from the field was made in February 2006. Production was stopped temporarily due to a militant attack in June 2008 and was resumed later in the same month.

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