The Niger Delta Avengers has denied entering into a ceasefire agreement with the Federal Government.
The group said this on Tuesday in reaction to media reports saying it has signed a 30-day ceasefire pact with the government.
Reports quoting sources at the Ministry of Petroleum as saying that the government secured truce from the group as part of the reported negotiation process flooded the Internet on Tuesday.
According to local and foreign media, including Reuters, sources at the Ministry of Petroleum, revealed that the NDA was among the group that agreed to a ceasefire agreement signed by the representatives of the Federal Government and Niger Delta militants.
But a Twitter post by the NDA said its “high command” was not aware of the reported ceasefire.
“The NDA high command never remembers having any agreement on ceasefire with the Nigerian Government,” it tweeted.
The NDA has taken a responsibility for a series of bombings of oil and gas assets in the Niger Delta in recent times.
Meanwhile, the Secretary-General of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, Dr. Mohammed Barkindo, on Tuesday said the carrot and stick approach would help check the violence being unleashed by the Niger Delta Avengers.
The former Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation spoke with State House correspondents shortly after holding a closed door meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
He said, “For me, based on my own experience here, the option of carrot and stick, as they call it, I think, is the way forward.
“Government, I understand, is negotiating, discussing and we are beginning to see positive results. So I don’t think it will be proper to preempt these discussions that are being handled by Dr. (Ibe) Kachikwu.
“But I remain confident that through these negotiations, stable and permanent solutions will be found to this problem, because the Niger Delta is a very important part of our country and whatever we can do to address the challenges of development, I think is the way forward.
In a related development, the Nigerian Navy has arrested an unspecified number of pipeline vandals in Niger Delta.