The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation has embarked on a more rigorous exploration of the Gongola and other frontier inland basins as part of efforts to shore up the oil and gas reserve base across the country.
The Group Managing Director, NNPC, Dr. Maikanti Baru, made this disclosure when he paid separate visits to the Governors of Bauchi, Mr. Mohammad Abubakar; and Gombe State, Mr. Ibrahim Dankwambo, as well as the Emir of Bauchi, Alhaji Rilwanu Adamu, and the Emir of Gombe, Alhaji Abubakar Shehu Abubakar III.
A statement from the corporation on Friday quoted Baru to have said, “In strict compliance with President Muhammadu Buhari’s mandate, the NNPC has, therefore, commenced activities in the Gongola Basin by awarding the contract for seismic data acquisition of over 500 square kilometres of 3D seismic data in the first instance.
“The NNPC is deploying state of the art technology in the present data acquisition and we are confident that these efforts will lead to clearer definition of the prospective of the basin.”
He added that the contractors awarded the contract for the seismic data acquisition in the Gongola Basin, Integrated Data Service Limited, a subsidiary of the NNPC, and the Bureau for Geophysical Prospecting, were mobilising to commence the project.
The GMD stated that the seismic data acquisition activities and exploration well drillings would bring about employment opportunities for youths, adding that when successful, the multiplier effects would contribute to the economic empowerment of the surrounding communities and the nation at large.
Baru said as part of its corporate social responsibility, the corporation was in the process of awarding the environmental baseline studies and Environmental Impact Assessment to the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, as well as to Bauchi and Modibbo Adama University of Technology, Yola.
Both governors applauded the President for the move to commence exploratory activities in the Gongola Basin and other frontier inland basins, stressing that the move would further grow the nation’s oil and gas reserves.
“I want to assure you of the unflinching support of Bauchi State and its good people towards this project. We are ready to provide offices and accommodation for all NNPC staff that will work on this project,” Abubakar said.
Dankwambo stated, “Already, we have assigned two ministries that will work with your team on this laudable project. I will work with my colleague governors in the North-East to galvanise support from our people for this project.”