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Senate committee urges Buhari on $1b project

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By John Ofikhenua, Abuja

 

The Senator Magnus Abe-led Committee on Compensatory Contracts and other incentives for Kaztec Engineering Limited yesterday advised President Muhammadu Buhari to reverse and not to abandon the $1billion project on which Adax Petroleum Limited declared a Force Majure.

Abe gave the advice while speaking with reporters after presenting the report of the committee to the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva in Abuja.

The minister promised to “ensure that there is justice for our investors, and justice also for Nigeria”.

 

Sylva added that “I am going to go through the report and ensure that the recommendations are forwarded to the President and implemented”.

Meanwhile, Abe said “the most important thing is that the project should not be abandoned, and that the facilities must be used”.

The committee had submitted an interim report to the minister but only decided to make a formal presentation of the report, said Abe.

According to the committee chairman, the project was targeted at extracting 19 million barrel of crude oil to boost the country’s reserve

But since Addax Petroleum Limited abandoned the contract for unrelated matters, according to Abe, it has rendered over 3,000 Nigerians jobless.

He said: “It is important Nigerians realize what happened from this project. First of all, as we speak, this was project that was to extract over 19 million barrel and add over 19 million barrel to our existing reserve. It should have been part of the daily national production of this country.”

He explained to reporters that it was “a well project that was given to Adax Petroleum and they gave the contract to a Nigeria company called Kaztec and the company invested over $650million on facilities where the project would be carried out.

 

“After investing that $650million, Adax which was the company that was in charge of the project had issues with Nigeria government .

“So, they (Adax) declared a Force Majure that they could no longer go on with the project. So as a result of that, the entire investment of the Nigerian company went to wast and more than 3,000 workers were off”.

Describing the pitiable situations which the force majure has plunged the country, he told the minister that an analysis of the action provokes tears.

Abe sad: “After that project was awarded and everything was in place and contract was awarded, and over close to $1b had been invested in it, Adax Petroleum called the Force Majure for issues that were totally unrelated to the particular project at hand.

“That action has thrown over 3,000 Nigerians out of work. It wasted billions of dollars of hard currency that this country would have used in jeopardy.

“If you go to that site Minister and see what the members of committee were saw, you will weep over what happened to this country.

“We have carefully analysed that so that the public should know the extent of damage that done not just by an indigenous Nigeria company but to the economic interest of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“Not only were the workers there affected, but a lot of things that would have been done in-country, that would have been useful even in other projects we now have to pay for them again to carry out even other projects that are not related to the investment that have been made there.”

 

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