Nigeria’s President - Muhammadu Buhari, has directed the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to extend its crude oil exploration to six basins in the country. President Buhari gave the directive at Barambu town in Alkaleri Local Government Area of the Bauchi State on Saturday while flagging off the commencement of drilling activities at Kolmani-II Oil Well, Gongola Basin, Upper Benue Trough.
Speaking at the event, the President said “Exploration in our frontier basins is imperative to the economy of the country, I therefore have directed NNPC to intensify its campaign in the Chad Basin, to discover new hydrocarbon to extend the economy of the people within the region and the nation at large. Our next level is to ensure that exploration is extended to Chad Basin, Gongola Basin, Anambra Basin, Sokoto Basin, Dahomey Basin, Bida Basin and Benue Trough, for more prosperous Nigeria. Gas and oil remain critical to the present economic development of our country and the future,” he said.
Furthermore, President Buhari commended the NNPC for the exploration into Kalmani River II Well, which he said, will spur-off socioeconomic activities. The President noted that his acquaintance with hydrocarbon research and exploration started in Lake Chad as Federal Commissioner of Petroleum and Natural resources in 1976 during which he supervised the drilling of 23 wells, which two were of gaseous, and leading to NNPC acquiring 2,000 square meters of land in the basin. The President also reiterated his administration’s determination in pursuing its goal of ensuring adequate security, enhancing the economy of the country, as well as fighting corruption.
Earlier in his remarks, the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Maikanti Baru, said that the exploration exercise started some years back and is a testament to the resolve of the NNPC in discovering new oil and gas assets in the Country and increasing the country’s oil reserves. Mr. Baru also expressed his gratitude to those who made sacrifices towards ensuring the realization of the set goals noting that oil exploration is a capital intensive project that takes many years to accomplish. He however said that with patience and perseverance, success could be attained, and therefore commended all stakeholders, urging them to sustain their commitment.