Presidential Candidate Vows To Recharge Lake Chad, Continue Exploration Works In Frontier Basins

A candidate for president in the 2023 election in Nigeria, Ahmed Tinubu, has promised to see that the Lake Chad water is recharged for robust agro-allied economic activities.

Mr Tinubu, who is vying for the presidency on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) also made a commitment continue exploration works in all frontier basins in the country.

The popular politician made these commitments on Tuesday at an event organised as a “ground-breaking ceremony for oil drilling at Kalmani Area of Gongola Basin now located between Bauchi and Gombe states.”

Mr Tinubu who is seeking to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari in 2023, “to sustain the economic development agenda” of his party accompanied the President to an event where he made a speech on policy continuation.

The groundbreaking event ushered in the first oil drilling project in the Northern part of the country.

A statement from the head of the Tinubu media office, Tunde Rahman, indicated that the APC Presidential candidate “commended the president for what he called historic achievement, saying he had always believed every part of the country is richly blessed and should be supported to fully develop their potential and contribute to national prosperity.”

The statement quoted Tinubu saying that “the effort to find hydrocarbon deposits in our frontier basins has now paid off. The successful delivery of this project will elevate energy security for the country, and promote economic growth and prosperity for all our people.”

“I would like to commend President Buhari and the NNPC team for being steadfast and for the hardwork.”

The former Lagos State governor gave an assurance that, when elected president, he would “be committed to the good works that the present administration had started and bring about their full realization.”

“To ensure overall energy security and resource mobilization for our country, if elected, we shall continue the ongoing exploration works in all frontier basins in line with the new Petroleum Industry Act of 2021,” the APC candidate said.

“We will intensify oil search on Borno Basin, Sokoto Basin, Bida Basin, Anambra Basin and other basins.

“Mr President, I join you in anticipation of the full delivery of the projects and other projects of this nature in future.”

The event, according to the statement, “was attended among others by Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, APC National Chairman, Abdullahi Adamu, Deputy National Chairman, North, Senator Abubakar Kyari, Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Chief Timiprey Sylva, Group CEO, NNPC Limited, Mele Kyari and his team.

Mr Tinunu was accompanied to the event by his running mate, Senator Kashim Shettima, and Governors of Kebbi and Jigawa States, Alhaji Atiku Bagudu and Alhaji Abubakar Badaru respectively.

Also on the trip were the Chairman of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND), Alhaji Kashim Ibrahim-Imam, former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC), Mallam Nuhu Ribadu and many other important personalities.

The discovery of crude oil happened sixty-six years after crude was discovered in Nigeria.

President Buhari, officially flagged off the ex excesspected drilling of crude oil at the Kolmani field, which is cited within the borders of Bauchi and Gombe states.  

The first phase of the exploration, according to Guardian “will entail an in-situ oil refinery of up to 120,000 barrels per day capacity, a gas processing plant of about 500 million standard cubic feet per day, a power plant of up to 300-megawatt capacity and a fertiliser plant of 2,500 tons per day, according to the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited.”

President Buhari who presided over the event said said “one billion barrels of crude oil reserves and 500 billion standard cubic feet of gas exist in Kolmani River Oil and Gas Field.”

He said his administration has attracted over $3 billion in the oil and gas sector at a time of near-zero appetite for investment in fossil energy. 

The official groundbreaking ceremony has ushered in two Oil Prospecting Licenses (OPLs) which are OPL809 and OPL810 at the Kolmani field site in Gongola basin.

President Buhari said the discovery at Kolmani is a significant development because “efforts to find commercial oil and gas outside the established Niger Delta Basin was attempted for many years without the desired outcomes.”

“We are pleased with the current discovery of over one billion barrels of oil reserves and 500 billion Cubic Feet of Gas within the Kolmani area and the huge potential for more deposits as we intensify exploration efforts.

“It is good to note that the discovery has now attracted investment for an end-to-end integrated development and monetisation of the hydrocarbon resources,” President Buhari said.

Mr Buhari who doubles as the Minister of Petroleum said further that upstream production, oil refining, power generation and fertiliser are anticipated in the region.

“It is, therefore, to the credit of this administration that at a time when there is near zero appetites for investment in fossil energy, coupled with the location challenges, we can attract investment of over $3 billion to this project.

“This will surely be a reference subject for favourable discussion in the industry as we pursue the just energy transition programme that will culminate in our country achieving a Net-Zero position by the year 2060,” he said. 

The Kolmani oil field is a landlocked location that will require huge capital investment, which the federal government has to de-risk to attract the much-needed investment.

The Humanitarian Times is reporting this story because the discovery of oil in northeast Nigeria when fully harnessed across all chains of benefits, would create thousands of jobs for the populace, help restore losses caused by the 13 years of insurgency and de-escalate armed violence as well as extremism.

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