Connect with us

Oil & Gas

CSOs decry exclusion in Marginal Oil fields’ bid rounds



CSOs decry exclusion in Marginal Oil fields’ bid rounds

A coalition of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) has decried their exclusion from the proposed Marginal Oil fields’ bid rounds announced by the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR).

The group’s protest was contained in a letter to the DPR, jointly signed by the National Coordinator, Publish What You Pay (PWYP) Nigeria, Peter Egbule; Executive Director Centre for Transparency Advocacy (CTA), Faith Nwadishi.

Others include Executive Director, Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), Rafsanjani Auwal Musaand, Chairman, Human and environmental Development Agenda (HEDA) Olanrewaju Suraj.

Others are the National President, Green Alliance Nigeria (GAN) Chima Williams, Chief Executive Connected Development (CODE) Hamzat Lawal; National Coordinator, Media Initiative on Transparency in Extractive Industry (MITEI) Bassey Udo and Programmes Manager, Selemati Foundation, Rita Kigbara.

Also, Executive Director, Enough is Enough (EiE) Nigeria, Yemi Ademolokun; Principal Lead, BudgIT Foundation, Gabriel Okeowo, Director Civic Media Lab, Akinfolarin Oluwaseun, and Programmes Officer, West African NGO Network (WANGONeT) Sandra Dike.

The coalition said that the published bid guidelines by DPR did not involve CSOs among agencies that would monitor the exercise of the Federal Government’s planned award of 57 marginal oil fields’ licenses.

The CSOs said that the published guidelines for the auction were fraught with provisions that might hamper the interest of genuine bidders in the oil fields and deny the country the benefits of set objectives.

They emphasized strict adherence to globally accepted best-practices, while expressing doubts that the current exercise would bring a different result from the past, if government did not make the process more transparent.

They, therefore, advocated the immediate inclusion of about two civil society representatives in the bidders screening team as observers to build public trust and investors’ confidence in the bid process.

The group also sought strong legislative oversight by the National Assembly and involvement of the Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) before, during and after the exercise to avoid the experiences of the past.

“After reviewing the guidelines, and putting into perspective, past experiences and pitfalls of similar processes, we deem it important to draw your attention to some of the points that can hinder the success of the process, or limit Nigeria from deriving optimal financial and socio-economic benefits from the exercise.

“We are prepared to play our roles as civil society in support of this very important national exercise with the understanding that it is intended and designed to deliver the overriding interest of Nigeria and Nigerians,” it said.

The group identified licensing as one of the weakest links for value realisation from Nigeria’s petroleum industry, adding that previous exercises between 2000 and 2007 not only fell below global best practices, it failed to secure maximum value for the country’s assets.

To deliver the expected increase in revenue and proven crude oil reserves as well as increase in daily crude oil production, the group said the government must ensure the set goals conformed to the country’s long-term planning objectives in the sector.

According to the CSOs, previous licensing rounds in the country were not tied to any comprehensive asset development strategy or broader economic development plans.

They added that each licensing round of objectives must align with the country’s strategy for managing natural resource base for current and future generations.

The group also called on the government to strengthen the National Data Repository Geological system by making authenticated and certified data easily accessible to bidders to attract capable investors to the oil assets on auction.

On the bidding process, the group urged the DPR to adhere to the published guidelines and criteria on the bid to avoid confusion and ensure due process, noting that the de-politicised criteria must be developed to support local content without compromising the sector’s development potential or returns.

“Nigeria must resist the tendency to extend preferential treatment to companies solely because they are local and well-connected.

“The DPR should amend the guidelines to accommodate the disclosure by all bidders of ‘sworn declaration, complete, comprehensive and accurate information on their ultimate beneficial owner(s).

“This will show that Nigeria is fully compliant with her obligations under the EITI and Open Government Partnership (OGP) principles, transparency and a level-playing-field that will not allow ‘business as usual’ by vested interests,” they said.

Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Grace Yussuf (NAN)


Edith Ike-eboh: is a graduate and a professionally trained journalist, with experience in national news reporting/editing and verification at the News Agency of Nigeria. NNN is a Nigerian online news portal that publishes breaking news in Nigeria, and across the world. Our journalists are honest, fair, accurate, thorough and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting news in the best interest of the public, because truth is the cornerstone of journalism and they strive diligently to ascertain the truth in every news report. Contact: editor[at]

Court fixes Sept. 29 to rule in no-case-submission filed by El-Zazaky Britain to fund Northern Ireland trade declaration system Lagos Govt. conducts 66,000 COVID-19 sample tests NEMA warns of likely flooding in 28 states, 102 local governments Trader arraigned on alleged theft of laptop, cell phones Minister appeals to NASS for improved budget for physical planning in FCT Rotary Governor tasks members on impactful projects for underprivileged Kwara community hands over upgraded NSCDC outpost, donates patrol vehicle Soil Science Institute partners ministry to enhance food production Tricycle rider docked over alleged phone theft Woman in court for allegedly misappropriating N144, 740 Gov. Okowa felicitates Obiano at 65 NLC urges Air Peace, others to reinstate sacked workers within 2 weeks Court dissolves 13-year-old marriage as wife starves husband of sex COVID-19: Mobile court convicts 39 defaulters for violating protocols in Edo LASUTH Medicine Dept donates scrubs to doctors Ganduje wants partnership with FG to boost gold trade Nigerian Shippers’ Council donates medical items to Ilorin General Hospital Insecurity: Gov Bagudu urges traditional rulers to support community policing Businessman in court over alleged N1.4m fraud Buhari meets Edo APC Gubernatorial Candidate,Ize Iyamu at Aso Villa Oil slips below $45 on-demand concerns, set for weekly rise Mauritius facing environmental crisis after oil spill Sumo wrestler’s retirement offer rejected in spite of breaking COVID-19 rules Court remands man for allegedly defiling 13-year-old Quail meat, an antidote for hypertension-Scientist Russia’s coronavirus vaccine undergoes final testing phase DPR seals 8 stations over unsafe practice in Akwa Ibom Malaysia’s ex-finance minister hit with kickback charge, wife arrested Alleged rape: Court remands man pending legal advice Africa’s COVID-19 cases hit 1m, with South Africa worst-hit LASG directs JSS 3 students to resume Monday FG to encourage more private/public partnership to boost domestic gas Flood wrecks havoc in Kafanchan NNL 2020/21: Gov. Makinde sets promotion target for 3SC New South Wales offers to host Australian Open as Melbourne battles COVID-19 spike It’s tough to stay focused at spectator-free events, golfer says NGF pledges to provide support for performance assessment of states Oyo agriculture college chairman pledges commitment to institution’s growth NCDC confirms 354 new COVID-19 cases as total hits 45,244 Gov. Bagudu sets up committee to refund Hajj deposits to pilgrims Gov. Bagudu distributes CACOVID food, relief materials to 38,047 households COVID-19: Osun Govt warns against indiscriminate decontamination, fumigation FG launches distribution of agricultural inputs in Cross River COVID-19: Ooni urges Africans to contribute to global development NSCDC pledges maximum support to Amotekun in Oyo state FG to pay June hazard allowance of medical workers from Aug. 10 Northern Governors condemn attacks in Southern Kaduna NAFDAC advises careful examination of products before buying Ooni tasks govt on food security as Ife celebrate yam festival