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Ogun Set To Join Oil Producing States, As Exploration Commences

THE quest of Ogun State to be an oil producing state will soon materialize as the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Limited is set to begin oil and gas exploration in the Gateway State.

Stakeholders in the oil industry, including the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (Oil), Heineken Lokpobiri,
Managing Director, SHELL Petroleum Development Company Ltd, Mr. Osagie Okubor; Chief Executive, Nigeria Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission, Engr. Gbenga Komolafe and Group Chief Executive Officer, NNPC Ltd, Mr Mele Kyari, stormed Ogun State on Friday on plans by the Federal Government to start oil exploration in the state.


They were received by Governor Dapo Abiodun and his Deputy, Engr. Noimot Salako-Oyedele.

Hon. Lokpobiri, who spoke at the governor’s office, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta said Ogun State has always been part of the Dahomey Basin with prospect of having huge deposit of hydrocarbons.

The Minister said: “We decided that we are going to resume exploration in the different Basins; we decided to come to Ogun State to reassure the people that we have very high potential of discoveries here. Ogun has always been part of the Dahomey Basin and our presence underscore the seriousness the federal government attaches to the exploration activities that we want to carry out in Ogun State.”

Hon. Lokpobiri who added that oil and gas remain the quickest way to Nigeria’s economic prosperity, said his team is in the State in continuation of the campaign for exploration activities.

He said the visit was also to demonstrate the seriousness and commitment of the federal government to shore up its revenue through the oil and gas sector.

“Today we are here to tell the people of the federal government’s commitment to ensuring that we continue our campaign and exploration activities across the country. We are doing this exploration activities in several places across Nigeria and today we are in Ogun after which we will proceed to Sokoto State,” he added.

The Group Managing Director, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited (NNPCL), Mr. Mele kyari, while speaking, said Ogun State is blessed to be in the Dahomey Basin corridor with an expected high deposit of oil, assuring that the corporation is coming back in ernest to commence exploration activities, even as he expressed the hope that oil would be found in commercial quantity.

In his remarks, the Executive Director, of the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission, Mr. Genga Komolafe, said the coming of the team to Ogun State is to further demonstrate the commitment of the Federal Government to grow the oil reserves and enhance federation revenue.

“We all understand that Nigeria is very prolific in oil and gas, but there is still a need to grow the reserves through exploration activities given our huge hydrocarbon reserves as a benchmark,” he noted.

Komolafe informed me that the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) makes provision for the funding of the development of the Frontier Basins, adding that, in line with the commitment and aspirations of the government, the Nigerian Petroleum Regulatory Commission is working in synergy with the NNPCL to leverage the PIA to aggressively carry out oil exploration in the Dahomey Basin.

“The Dahomey Basin stretches up to Delta, Edo, Ogun and Ondo states. We intend to, in the course of this exercise, cover all those states, leveraging the provisions of Section 9, Subsection 4 of the PIA. This is a good opportunity for the people of Ogun State, and it would be complementary to the reforms and transformation initiatives of the governor. We want to congratulate the governor and the people for being the beneficiaries of this initiative,” Komolafe said.

Responding, Governor Abiodun said Ogun State is part of the OPLs 302, 303, 306, and 307, saying the acreages present unique opportunities for the qualification as a Frontier Exploration State as defined in PIA Section 9.

He observed that the history and studies over the years allow any investment under the frontier exploration basin funding to not only realize the oil and gas potentials, but also acquire data that would aid bitumen exploration and exploitation in Nigeria.

The country, Abiodun maintained, holds the second largest reserves in the world of 42,b tons, adding that a lot of studies have shown the potential of the basins, which brings Ogun State to the fore and projects it towards becoming a beneficiary to achieve commercial success and derive economic benefits from exploration and production within a minimum time schedule.

“It is noteworthy that this is a region of the country that provides ease of access, low entry and operating costs, a safe and welcoming community, and very active state government support and participation.

“Ogun State therefore presents some unique opportunities towards the realization of the full intentions of PIA section 9 on frontier exploration, as it will contribute to guaranteeing additional petroleum production of additional petroleum products for the country and afford more supply to potential refineries in the area.

“As a low hanging result, this area also presents the opportunity for bitumen extraction, thereby reducing import dependency and bringing with its savings in foreign exchange expenditure on this single line item,” governor said.

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