WorldStage Newsonline– President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria has approved that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) along with its subsidiary, National Petroleum development Company (/NPDC) should take over the operatorship of the entire Oil Mining Lease 11 (OML11) from Shell petroleum Development Company (SPDC).
OML 11 which contains oil wells in the Ogoniland lies in the southeastern Niger Delta and contains 33 oil and gas fields of which eight are producing as at 2017.
SPDC had abandoned activities in the Ogoni section of the lease for about 26 years following the crisis that erupted following the killing of prominent Ogoni leaders including Ken Saro-Wiwa.
According to reliable sources, the takeover by NNPC.NPDC should be not later than 30 April 2019 and they are to ensure smooth re-entry given the delicate situation in Ogoniland.
The NNPC/NPDC is expected to confirm by 2 May 2019 of the assumption of the operatorship, according to the sources.
The royal fathers in Ogoniland had last year endorsed an indigenous oil firm, Robo Micheal Limited to commence operation in OML 11 in Ogoni. But this decision may not have received the blessing of the government.
The Supreme Council of Ogoni Traditional Rulers and the Conference of Ogoni Traditional Rulers jointly gave the endorsement as its resolution reached at the end of a meeting of the 27 members of the Council held in the Palace of its Chairman, HRH, King Godwin Giniwa in Korokoro, Tai Local Government Area of Rivers State.
The 27 members of the Ogoni Traditional council which represents the 27 Monarchs in the Kingdom and communities of Ogoni, said the endorsement of Robo Micheal Limited was imperative as the company has been engaging with the people and already had obtained the operatorship license for OML11 from the Federal Government.
Earlier report confirmed that Nigeria’s Ministry of Petroleum had approved the recommendation by the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), to revoke three Oil Mining Leases (OMLs) operated by SPDC, a local arm of Shell, the Anglo Dutch major.
The acreages recommended to be revoked out 17 acreages submitted for renewal purposes by SPDC were include OMLs 31, 33 and 36
The 17 acreages that Shell submitted for renewal purposes were: OMLs 11, 17, 20, 21, 22, 23, 25, 27, 28 31, 32, 33, 35, 36, 43, 45 and 46. The properties were due to expire in 2019.