Fugitive ex-militant leader, Government Ekpemupolo, also known as Tompolo, has been handed a stern warning by a new militant group known as the Niger Delta Avengers over his letter to President Muhammadu Buhari disowning the group and assuring the federal government of safety on the proposed repair works on damaged gas pipelines in the region.
On Tuesday, Tompolo had, in an open letter to President Buhari personally signed and titled "I AM NOT PART OF THE NIGER DELTA AVENGERS GROUP," alleged that the oil pipeline repair servicing companies engaged in sabotage to secure surveillance and repair contracts from the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) due to its known deficiency in its handling of jobs.
Tompolo also disowned the Niger Delta Avengers and called on the oil servicing company who awarded the contract to repair the damaged Forcados 48-inch pipeline to go about its job without fear.
But the new militant group, in a statement sent to media outlets yesterday via email, warned Tompolo against giving false assurances to oil servicing contractors, adding that his recent show of support to the President Buhari-led Government is provocative.
According to the statement, "With due respect Sir, we the Niger Delta Avengers respect you and all former agitators from the region. We admire your love for the region and all you have done. The Niger Delta Avengers made it clear that we are not part of the Presidential Amnesty program because the program is not genuine.
"We the Niger Delta Avengers have only decided to pick the struggle up from where you and the former Niger Delta agitators left off; it is only the actors that are new. You are not one of us and you need not border yourself to try to convince anyone.
"As a result, if you can’t join us, PLEASE take your hands off our activities because it’s a slap on our face for you to give a nod for repair works to continue on the 48-inch pipeline at Forcados despite a stern warning by us for no one to go near the blast site.”
The group proceeded to threaten Tompolo in its statement, saying, “We hereby give you a three-day ultimatum to apologize to the Niger Delta Avengers in the same national dailies, as anything other than that will mean that we shall bring the war to your doorstep by blowing up all oil installations within your backyard, Gbaramatu Kingdom, since you have taken sides with the federal government to fight the Niger Delta people."
The statement concluded by advising Tompolo to keep quiet on the group’s activities.