This came as the Police faulted claims that the men were dead, challenging those who are of that opinion to provide the corpses as proof for their claim.
As at yesterday, some policemen, according to the Force Public Relations Officer, Mr Frank Mba, were currently combing the creeks where the incident happened for the missing men, explaining that rescue operation was initially hampered because of the inferno.
Vanguard gathered that the fire went off yesterday on its own, four days after the pipeline was shut down by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC.
It would be recalled that some policemen attached to the Inspector-General of Police Task Force on Anti Pipeline Vandalism, who got wind of vandals’ operation in Arepo, stormed the area apparently to effect their arrest.
But the vandals said to have sighted the Policemen from afar, opened fire which was repelled by the operatives, in the process of which bullets were said to have penetrated the steel frame of the pipeline and resulted in an explosion.
Four policemen were said to have been rescued while the whereabouts of others are still unknown.
The Force Headquarters, as learnt, will issue a statement on the incident today.