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NNPC Corporation suspends crude oil exploration in Chad basin

The suspension was announced by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu.

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The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has suspended all its exploration for crude oil in the Lake Chad area of Borno state after attacks on its staff this week.

The suspension was announced by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, while addressing journalists at the NNPC towers in Abuja on Thursday, July 27, 2017.

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Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources

(Pulse.ng)

 

Kachikwu said the corporation's exploration activities will be put on hold until it gets sufficient security clearance that guarantees the safety of its personnel and operations.

He said, "Obviously  the security outfits should take a second look at what has happened and any area where Boko Haram is operating; we need to see how to provide more protection in those areas, certainly we will not go back  unless they give us security clearance.

"When we will resume will be obviously  be decided  upon the security on ground.

"So my simple answer will be that provided that there is sufficient clearance, I don’t see why we will not continue to explore oil."

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On Tuesday, Boko Haram terrorists reportedly killed many oil exploration workers and kidnapped many others in an attack that took place at Magumeri in Gubio Local Government area of the state.

Kachikwu said the operations had been carried out after the corporation got the necessary clearance from security agencies.

The clearance had prompted the corporation to resume exploration activities in Gubio, Magumeri, Monguno, Kukawa, Abadam, Guzamala, and Mobar.

The Director, Army Public Relations, Brig.-Gen. Sani Usman, announced on Wednesday that the kidnapped members of the exploration team had been rescued by the military.

However, Kachikwu could not confirm this, saying, "We only heard, but can't confirm if anyone has been rescued."

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