According to the Federal Ministry of Power, the vandalism incident was recorded over the weekend and was the third since the beginning of this year on the pipeline.
It said the damage on the Trans Forcados pipeline at Oteghele area of Bayelsa State caused crude oil spill.
The ministry said in a statement, “Consequent upon this incident, all oil and gas production into this pipeline has been shut down to allow for damage assessment and repairs. The duration of the disruption has not been estimated yet by sector technical experts, but it is expected to reduce the volume of gas available for power generation whilst the situation lasts.”
It will be recalled that the 24-inch TFP section of the Trans Forcados pipeline at Okuokoko/Ugbomro was vandalised on January 2, 2015.
Two days later, the vandals reportedly destroyed the 24-inch TFP section at Egbokodo and the 28-inch TFP section at Yeye /Chanomi.
According to the ministry, experts went to work immediately at the vandalised sections and after about one week on each section, repairs were effected and the pipeline was put back to use.
The Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, appealed for the understanding of electricity consumers, because of the reduction in power supply that the development might cause in some parts of the country.
The minister described as “painful” the possible motive of sabotage in view of the established cycle of vandalism incidents always coming on the heels of achieved high generation levels.
He, however, assured Nigerians that the ministry’s collaboration with the Office of the National Security Adviser and the security forces had resulted in the arrest of some pipeline vandals in the recent past.