By; Bayo Akamo, Ibadan.
A 29 year generator mechanic was on Saturday arrested by men of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) surveillance in connection with an alleged vandalization of NNPC pipeline.
South-West Coordinator of the NNPC surveillance team, Chief Joshua Aminu disclosed this in Ibadan during a chat with journalists on activities of the team.
Chief Aminu hinted that the suspected vandal was arrested by his men at Ipara/Abe Koko along Lagos/Ibadan expressway with 6 Ford buses with registration numbers Lagos AAA 775 XQ, Lagos MUS 651 XP, Oyo BDJ 884 XA, Lagos AKD 585 XQ, Lagos LND 103 XF and Lagos KTU 157 XF and two cars, Nissan Primeira with registration number Ogun XB 171 SRA and Toyota Camry car with no registration number recovered at the scene by his men.
According to him, the suspect whose name was given as Idowu Awoleye from Saki area of Oyo State was nabbed at 1.30 am on Saturday by the team while he and other members of his gang were loading fuel into jerry cans from NNPC pipeline.
Chief Aminu stressed that the said suspected vandal was arrested as a result of a security tip off from the area that some vandals were already tampering with the NNPC pipeline after which his men stormed the scene with the vandals reportedly firing to scare his men from the scene.
He pointed out that the vandals on sighting that his men were better equipped than them abandoned their vehicles already loaded with jerry cans full of fuel and escape into the bush.
However, he said Idowu Awoleye was arrested while trying to escape from the bush pretending as a farmer/hunter just returning from his farm nearby.
Chief Aminu added that upon his arrest, the suspected vandal was handed over to the Inspector General of Police monitoring team along the Lagos/Ibadan expressway in Ogere.
He then vowed that the NNPC surveillance team will continue to protect NNPC pipelines from the economic saboteurs, adding that “NNPC surveillance team in the South-West will continue to make life unbearable for pipeline vandals as our men will not allow them to continue to damage our economy through their nefarious activities”.