INSENSITIVE: NSCDC Boss Abdullahi Gana Warns Against Building On Gas Pipelines

INSENSITIVE: NSCDC Boss Abdullahi Gana Warns Against Building On Gas Pipelines

By Manny Akpan | News Reporter on March 15, 2020
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Scene from the Abule Ado gas pipeline explosion in Lagos on Sunday, March 15, 2020. | Twitter
A scene from the Abule Ado gas pipeline explosion in Lagos on Sunday, March 15, 2020. | Twitter

Abdullahi Muhammadu, the commandant general, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, on Sunday, March 15, 2020 warned people residing within the petroleum pipeline network and gas installations areas to vacate as such was illegal and a threat to their lives.

Gana issued an official e-mailed statement to The Trent against the backdrop of Sunday’s explosion that rocked the Abule Ado area of Festac Town, Lagos State. Lagos government officials have confirmed 15 dead in the fire.

One of the confirmed dead in the fire is Henrietta Alokha, the principal of Bethelem High School in Abule Ado, has died while saving her students from the gas pipeline fire Sunday morning. Reverend Sister Henrietta Alokha was a Catholic nun.

Rev. Sr Henrietta Alokha
Rev. Sr Henrietta Alokha

He said tampering, digging; building and erecting kiosks or shops on gas pipeline and dumping/burning refuse around gas facility and pipeline always pose danger to lives and properties of the residents, even parking of vehicles, motorcycles, farming and smoking in gas pipeline areas are very dangerous to human existence.

Gana warned that government would not hesitate to demolish illegal structures obstructing free flow of movement within the pipelines Right of Way.

The Corps also advise residents to desist from further encroachment beyond the approved setback for oil pipeline corridor and Gas installation which the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) has warned the violators to steer clear of.

The Commandant General said the infringement on the statutorily guaranteed 100-metres setback for the infrastructure was not only detrimental to the free flow of petroleum products but was far more harmful to dwellers of illegal structures and shanties due to the combustible nature of hydrocarbon.

Gana revealed that, about two years ago the Corps embarked on extensive consultation and enlightenment exercise targeted at violators in affected communities noting that the safety and well-being of the people remain paramount.

“We encourage residents and other people that live or do business near pipelines, gas installation or any other government asset to report any encroachment to the Civil Defence or other law enforcement agencies.

“I mean we should take adequate steps to protect government installations and take such responsibility seriously and also see it as our collective obligation to report any breach promptly,” he said.

Henrietta Alokha, the principal of Bethelem High School in Abule Ado, has died while saving her students from the gas pipeline fire that engulfed the Lagos satellite town Sunday morning.

Bethlehem High School, a girls’ Catholic school and is one of the buildings hit by the disaster that occurred on Sunday, March 15, 2020 in Lagos.

Principal Of Catholic Girls’ School, A Catholic Nun Dies Saving Her Students

“We have just received the news of the demise of Rev. Sr Henrietta Alokha, Principal of Bethlehem High School Abule Ado involved in the petrol pipeline explosion that occurred earlier today,” an e-mailed statement to The Trent signed by Vincent Iwueze, the secretary of Worthy.

“Late Rev. Sr Henrietta Alokha is the younger sister of Our Worthy Advocate WB Anslem Alokha.

“Late Rev. Sr. Henrietta Alokha rescued all the children under her care from the pipeline fire and could not make it herself,” the statement read further.

11 Bodies Recovered From Abule Ado Gas Pipeline Explosion Site – Official

A total of eleven bodies have so far been recovered from the scene of the Abule Ado gas pipeline explosion in Lagos State.

This information was provided to the press on Sunday, March 15, 2020 by Femi Oke-Osanyintiolu, the boss of Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, LASEMA.

“With the rescue process in top gear, more bodies are likely to be recovered,” he is quoted as saying. “Remote, immediate cause of explosion yet to be ascertained, still under investigation.”

“Several injured victims currently receiving medical attention. Some due to shock,” Dr. Oke-Osanyintiolu said.

The residents of the satellite town in Amuwo Odofin Local Government Area of Lagos are still in shock after a  gas pipeline exploded in the early hours of Sunday.

Affected buildings in the area includes a girls’ Catholic school, Bethlehem Girls College. The school was instituted by Holy Family Catholic Church FESTAC Town.

Social media users have shared videos of the students of the school being rescued by being taken over a fence by men in the community.

Some of the girls were bloodied. Women could be seen wailing in the video.

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