Daily Trust

Lake Chad oil well to yield 943m barrels as Buhari flags off exploratio­n

- By Simon Echewofun Sunday

The Wadi-B Well in the Lake Chad Basin area of Borno State is expected to produce 943 million barrels of oil.

President Muhammadu Buhari flagged off the resumption of drilling in the well on Tuesday.

Joining the spud-in ceremony virtually at the Wadi-B oil well drilling in Tuba community, Jere LGA, Buhari said although the exploratio­n started in 1976, it was suspended in 1995 but after the success of Kolmani oil well last year, NNPC re-entered the Lake Chad Basin oil and gas exploratio­n.

“I look forward to a successful drilling campaign in the Chad Basin through the collaborat­ion of NNPC, NUPRC, other government agencies and through the people, security and government of the state,” Buhari said.

Earlier, the Commission Chief Executive, Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission, NUPRC, Engr. Gbenga Komolafe, said the well with Oil Prospectin­g Licence (OPL) 732 will add to the reserve.

Komolafe said, “We are optimistic that through this appraisal drilling, the huge hydrocarbo­n resource estimated at 943 million barrels of initial oil in place will be matured and migrated into the proven oil reserves.”

He also said NUPRC is ensuring the growth of oil reserves from 37 billion barrels to 40bn barrels by 2030, adding that NUPRC will also unveil the Frontier Exploratio­n Services Regulation on Wednesday to guide oil prospects in new frontiers.

In his address, the Group Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC), Malam Mele Kyari, said the company only remobilizi­ng for the drilling for the first time since 1995.

He said, “We stopped drilling here in 1996 because the successes were weak and our findings were not commercial.”

However, Kyari, said the experience in Kolmani oil well, the Nasarawa well and other rig systems brought NNPC back to resume exploratio­n in the Lake Chad Basin.

“We believe that this campaign will be successful and it will take us to the target of increasing oil and gas reserves in our country.

“This project will work; we are very committed, me and my team. It will work; this is a process, this process has value and this process will be created for everyone particular­ly for our people in this place,” he noted.

Kyari also said 70 per cent of Nigerians don’t have access to clean cooking energy and that it is associated with deforestat­ion and that the Sahara desert moves a kilometre south west every year, hence it was necessary to provide alternativ­e fuel.

He lauded the security forces and the Borno State government for boosting security in the state earlier ravaged by Boko Haram insurgents.

Governor Borno State Prof. Babagana Zulum, lauded Buhari for the frontier exploratio­n and his support to the people of the state.

Zulum said, “The project is quite commendabl­e, and it shall no doubt stand the test of time,” noting that it will create jobs, reduce unemployme­nt and curb insurgency.

The governor assured the NNPC’s EnServ team that along with security forces, the state shall do everything within the reach to provide security for the project.

The Shehu of Borno, HRH Abubakar Ibn Umar Garba Al-Amin Elkanemi said with derivation, our revenue will be great like other sister states that have oil and it that it will support the state.

He said the state is backward in education but with revenue coming from the well, there will be funds to build new universiti­es among others, including more job creation for youths.

Elkanemi said 10 of the 27 LGAs have never been connected to the national grid and that the project could spur power projects in the state.

Prof. Zulum the. did the physical spud-in ceremony on behalf of President Buhari.

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Oil exploratio­n „

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