NNPC Group Managing Director , Malam Mele Kyari

 By George Daniya

Efforts in search of the presence and availability of hydrocarbons in commercial quantity have heightened in the frontier basin; as the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) is to acquire 600km of two-dimensional (2D) data to evaluate the potentials of Bida Basin.

The Group Managing Director (GMD), NNPC, Malam Mele Kyari, represented by the Group General Manager, Frontier Exploration Services (FES), Abdullahi Bomai disclosed this while unveiling of 2D seismic data acquisition in the Bida/Sokoto Basin at the Government House, Minna.


Mal. Kyari said that the NNPC decided to further their exploration in the basin because an in-depth geological and geochemical study have indicated strong hydrocarbon-bearing indicators thus the need to unravel the deposit in the Bida Basin in Niger State.

“To this end, 600km of 2D seismic data will be acquired over the prospects in the Bida Basin to further evaluate the potential of the basin”, he said.

He stated that the exploration activities cover eight local government areas in the state comprising of Mokwa, Lavun, Gbako, Bida, Katcha, Again, Edati and Lapai and one local government each from Kwara and Kogi states.

According to him, world-class cutting edge technologies including surface geochemistry, ground gravity/magnetic stress field detection full tensor gradiometry ariel survey has been deployed in furtherance to explore large areas and de-risk prospects in the frontier basin because of identifying highly prospective hydrocarbon explorative targets in the Basin.

He added that to further exploration activities based on the needs of the Bida Basin, the management of NNPC approved the services of some of their key worthy partners to immediately seismic data acquisition to further unravel the basin’s hydrocarbon presence.

The GMD commended the research work carried out by the Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University (IBBU) Lapai, saying that the corporation has benefitted from the institution which they, in turn, have played their part of Corporate Social Responsibility by establishing a Professorial Chair in Basinal Studies from the corporation.

He assured the communities of compensation as most people are farmers, promising to engage both skilled, semi-skilled and unskilled labour as also different types of light and heavy-duty and articulated vehicles would be used.

“This should not cause any panic or disturbance. It is industry standard to assess such damages and provide appropriate compensation to affected persons and/or communities”, he pledged.

He emphasized that the NNPC is determined to carry out detailed exploration of the basin, using best standards and technologies with the hope of finding commercial deposits of oil and gas which was pivotal to achieving the target of growing nation’s reserve to 40billion barrel by year, 2023.

The GMD said that to achieve the mandate on the basin, the corporation solicited the support, cooperation and participation of the state, local governments, traditional rulers and all relevant stakeholders towards the success of the national mandate.

Responding, Governor Abubakar Sani Bello said that the state government has made available all machinery in the sector for the exploration of the Bida Basin that it becomes a reality so that the state becomes an oil-producing state.

Governor Bello appreciated the staff and management of the NNPC who are involved in the Bida Basin Exploration assuring them of government full support and cooperation, hoping that at the end of the exercise there should be good news on getting hydrocarbons on commercial quantity.

He said that the activities of the Bida Basin would create job opportunities, advising the corporation to draw lessons from the Niger Delta so that those to lose their means of livelihood are adequately compensated and directly involved in the activities.

The governor said even as the country wants to diversify the economy, the downstream sector should not be neglected as it remains the mainstay of the country’s economy.

On environmental degradation, the governor said that while exploration of the area was ongoing, tree felling has become rampant and the state government was planning afforestation programme of planting five million trees within the next five years, he then enjoined NNPC to key into the project to avoid erosion.