The Niger Delta Avengers (NDA), the group, which has led the attacks on oil assets in the country, says it “needs God more than anything right now”.
The statement comes after the Nigerian air force deployed fighter jets, gunships and other arsenal of war to the region.
The air force had said it was out to crush the militants and end the indiscriminate attacks across the Niger Delta.
But boasting that the NDA was not frightened, Mudoch Agbinibo, spokesman of the militants, said “the military warplanes hovering round our towns and villages have not struck a soul or destroyed any property, so those groups with anti-aircraft missiles should dry their gunpowder”.
“The liberation of the Niger delta people has taken a new swing with the daily emergence of new groups all over the region. The avengers are calling on all groups in the region to be strong and resolute as it is obvious that God is on our side,” Agbinibo said in a statement.
“The groups are much now both real and unreal but if you really fighting for the liberation of the Niger Delta people. The high command of the avengers is calling on you not to attack any soldier and those claiming to have anti-aircraft missiles should deist from targeting any aircraft.
“Let us be careful not offend God in the process of trying to liberate our people from the shackles of the Nigerian government because we need God more than anything right now. We also need the international bodies as well. Hence, we must desist from any life threatening actions that will derail our genuine struggle for our people.
“All groups are hereby discouraged from indulging in harassing oil workers and soldiers. We urge you all to help any oil workers or soldiers you see in distress.”
Agbinibo said the NDA will not hesitate to deal with any group that goes against its instruction, saying when the times comes for having a confrontation with the military comes, the message will be communicated.
“The avengers will deal with any group that refuses and attack military,” he said.
“When it is time to engage the military in combat the whole world will know they started the war not the Avengers. The Niger delta avengers high command will pass the message round that it’s time to engage on gun battle when it is time.
“So far, we have not engaged the Nigeria military in combat; despite the heavy presence of military on the pipelines. we still find way to carry out our actions without attacking soldiers.
“God is our strength; he is going to see the people of Niger delta through.”