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Nigeria seeks extra 3bn oil barrels with new drilling in Borno

Buhari asks Reps to approve $800m social safety loan  …as house adjourns plenary

President Muhammadu Buhari flagged off the Wadi-B oil and gas exploration campaign in Jere local government area of Borno State, on Tuesday with the objective of adding 3 billion barrels to Nigeria’s reserves by 2030.

Speaking virtually at the flag-off, President Buhari said the event marked the formal resumption of physical activities and the exploration of crude oil and gas in the Chad Basin area.

He said that while the search for oil began in the region in 1976, it was not until 1985 that sub-commercial gas was discovered.

The success recorded in the Komani oil field and Ebenyi-A Oil Well in Nassarawa State were clear indicators of success in the Wadi-B oil field, Buhari said.

The Wadi-B well is located in Tuba Community, Jere Local Government Area, 50 kilometres away from Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.

Mele Kyari, group chief executive officer of the NNPCL, said the drilling campaign will be successful, adding that the last oil drill performed at the Basin was done in 1995.

“We stopped drilling here in 1995 because the successes were weak, and findings were not commercial. We understood very clearly that we have to understand the Basin very well, we need to have a different approach to exploration activities in this Basin.

“That is why NNPC and her partner, the NUPRC, decided to embark on a data review on all the frontier basins in the country and our findings have been useful. Our understanding of the ridge system in Nigeria has enabled us to have successful outcomes in the Kolmani area and enabled us to mobilise to Nasarawa State.

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“Now we are back here and we are much more confident, and we believe that this campaign will be successful”, the GCEO said.

Gbenga Komolafe, who heads the upstream regulatory agency, the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) said that a key regulatory focus of the commission is to grow Nigeria’s national reserves from the current 37 billion barrels of oil to 40 billion barrels of oil by 2030.

Komolafe added that the outcome of this appraisal will significantly contribute to growth in our national oil reserves and facilitate sustainable domestic energy security.

“Considering the positive prospectivity results recorded so far, in OPL 732 from previous exploratory activities, we are optimistic that through this appraisal drilling the huge case prospective hydrocarbon resource estimated at about 9403 million barrels of oil, initial oil in place will be matured and migrated into proven reserves,” Komolafe said.

Babagana Zulum, Governor of Borno said, “The commencement of oil drilling in the region is the right step in creating more job opportunities in the state. Oil prospecting, possible discovery and exploration in this part of the country, and exploration in this part of the country will no doubt create opportunities for thousands of our youth.”

Thereby reducing unemployment in our state, which in turn results in a reduction in the insurgency, stimulating economic growth and development of our dear state and nation in general,” he said.