Residents of Ikotun at the wee hours of Friday waged war against suspected vandals who invaded their neighbourhood to steal Premium Motor Spirit from a Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) System 2B pipeline.
The vandals who stormed Omoboriowo Street in Ikotun along the Igando-Ikotun Road were not expecting to meet a resistance from the locals who were awoken by the offensive smell of PMS.
Sources who hinted on the development said the residents immediately contacted the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Monitoring Unit as well as the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) before mobilising themselves to go after the vandals.
It was gathered that the criminals who already connected MACK truck with registration number FKJ14XX to the vandalised point on the pipeline, abandoned the tanker, their hoses and other items for fear of being lynched.
“People were sleeping when they suddenly started perceiving offensive fuel odour. They suspected vandals have come to the area and woke each other up. They called our men in the area and then mobilised themselves and went after the vandals.
“The vandals fled the scene for fear of being mobbed and in the process abandoned the truck, their hoses and other items. Our people called NNPC and fire service because fuel was already leaking everywhere,” said a security operative who pleaded anonymity.
Confirming the vandalism, the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) in a statement said the entire area was enveloped with the stench of PMS and at risk of explosion.
“The vandalised pipeline was successfully repaired by the NNPC Maintenance Team from Sagamu on Friday afternoon. It did not result in an explosion. There was no injury nor death at the incident scene.
In another development, a truck carrying unknown number of people plunged into the Epe River from the Berger Bridge.
The truck said to have been laden with sand, fell into the lagoon late Friday prompting emergency workers to race to the location for possible rescue of persons aboard.
It was gathered that a joint team of Marine Police, LASEMA Marine Rescue Unit and local divers combed the entire area Friday night without success.