Austine Tsenzughul, Bauchi.
Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari has said that oil and gas remain key to Nigeria’s development.
The President said this at a Presidential Flag Off of oil and gas exploration at Kolmani River Well 11, aspic- in, Barambu village, in Alkaleri Local Government Bauchi state.
Buhari, who is also Nigeria’s Minister of Petroleum directed the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC)”to extend the exploration to other six basins within Nigeria,besides the Gongola Basin.
He recalled that, his association with hydrocarbon research dates back to when he was a Federal Commissioner for Petroleum.
While commending NNPC and other stakeholders in the oil and gas exploration sector for actualizing the Kolmani River II Well prospects,he expressed hope that oil and gas will be discovered in commercial quantity in the area.
In a welcome speech, NNPC,Group Managing Director (GMD) Dr.Maikanti Baru said “besides the Kolmani II, there are six other wells in the the Gongola basin of the Benue Trough which NNPC will be prospecting soon”.
He further revealed that NNPC will soon extend prospecting for oil and gas to Plateau, Nassarawa, Adamawa, Taraba and Benue State while waiting for security clearance from the Military to resume its exploration in Lake Chad basin suspended due to insecurity in Borno state.
Prospecting for oil and gas began in the Gongola Basin of the Upper Benue Trough about 20 years ago when research revealed that there is deposit of oil and gas in the area.
Among the personalities that attended the flag off were Bauchi state Gov. Mohammed Abubakar,his Gombe state counterpart Gov.IbrahimDankeambo,and other stakeholders in the oil and gas sector.
President Buhari who arrived at the exploration site by a helicopter, left immediately for Gombe State after the flag off, to continue with his re-election campaign.