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‘Significant oil find’ possible in Lake Chad basin: Nigeria




The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has said it “may well be on the verge of a significant oil find” in the Lake Chad area, which has been blighted by Boko Haram-related violence.

“There are signs from the latest 3D seismic studies that oil may well be very close to being found now in Lake Chad after very many years of trials,” added group managing director Ibe Kachikwu.

Kachikwu, appointed in August to overhaul the state-run group, described the potential find as “very key” and indicated it would help access to crude in northern Nigeria.

“I am optimistic that by the end of the year we should be able to announce something major on this,” he was quoted as saying in an emailed statement on Sunday evening.

Kachikwu gave no further details but it is understood he was referring to the Kukawa area of Borno state, where exploration had previously begun but was halted because of the six-year Islamist insurgency.

An NNPC source said exploration had resumed.

In 2006, Nigeria handed licences to the state-run China National Petroleum Corporation to explore four blocks in the Lake Chad basin.

Lake Chad forms the border between Nigeria, Niger, Chad and Cameroon. Chad hit oil on its side of the border in the late 1970s. Production hit 100,000 barrels a day in 2013.

Nigeria’s military has claimed a series of successes in pushing the militants out of captured towns and villages in the remote region, and has claimed rebel camps have been destroyed.

The discovery of oil has the potential to transform the Muslim-majority north, where poverty and unemployment have been seen as key factors in radicalisation.

There have been estimates that 100 billion cubic metres of oil deposits lie beneath Lake Chad and its arid hinterland in Nigeria.

Boko Haram wants to carve out a hardline Islamic state in northeast Nigeria but there have been no serious suggestions that its insurgency is driven by oil.

Instead, the militants’ aim is primarily ideological and religious.

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  • Peter_Edo

    now the truth comes out…

  • emmanuel kalu

    That is good, however I don’t believe it would change anything. it would all be wasted and looted, just like the oil found in the south. we have one of the largest amount of gas in the world, yet we are flaring 50% of it, we can supply enough to our power plants, people are still using firewood and we continue to subsidy kerosene. we have a problem with useless leaders, people that are not out to help the country or the people.

  • Mukhtari

    No news. NNPC trying to be sensational after loosing 300 million in 3 months under the new government. what about chad basin. The crude oil market today is a buyers market and supply outstrips demand. It cannot be a gamechanger for Nigeria’s economy in the short term nor the north because the south south has not benefitted from 50 years of crude oil.Throwing this potential find out there is a dummy to possibly help the government buy arms by drawing attention internationally to Boko Haram which they have pushed from the pages of local newspapers to a forgotten’ status while locals are being bombed out daily.