By; AMOS MATHEW, Kaduna
Due to a report that Nigeria accounts for 40 per cent of all gas flared in Africa, the Federal Government has taken a step to utilize 80 per cent of gas being flared in order to prevent air pollution in the oil producing communities.
The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) commenced the evaluation of Statement of Qualification (SOQ) of over 254 companies who had showed interest in Nigerian Gas Flare Commercialisation Programme (NGFCP).
The Director of DPR, Mordecai Baba Ladan, who was represented by his Deputy, Mr. Olusanya Bajomo, the Deputy Director, Gas Monitoring and Regulation, said at the opening ceremony of the pre-qualification exercise in Lagos, the committees setup was meant to evaluate those companies that had indicated interest to participate in the gas flare commercialization which was an initiative of the former Minister of Petroleum Rersources, Ibe Kachikwu.
Other committee members include the Proposal Evaluation Committee (PEC), International Observer Group (IOG), representatives of the Nigerian Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (NEITI), NNPC, DPR and Ministry of Petroleum Resources (MPR).
Bajomo explained that about 850 companies that earlier showed interest when the advert was first placed out dropped intrest since the applications fee attracts 1,000 dollars (N360,000) and other processing documentation, he stated that this was done to know those who are really serious.
He said the DPR has currently sourced for almost 178 flare gas points within and across the oil producing states, he confirmed that this was part of the President Muhammadu Buhari and former minister of State for Petroleum Resources agenda in the last administration to drastically minimize gas flare to zero level in Nigeria come 2020.
According to him, “Today, we are commencing the evaluation of statement of qualifications for the Nigerian Gas Flare Commercialization Programme, following the advertisement that was placed seeking for interested parties who are willing to work with Federal Government by extracting away the flared gas.
“We are ready to create document for the interested parties, the documents is to ascertain that those companies that have showed interest and submitted their statement of qualification in response to the advert placed in 2018 are evaluated, which after the evaluation, the successful shortlisted companies will proceed to the next phase of the exercise.
Bajomo also said the Nigerian Gas Commercialization Programme, which is part of government’s campaign flagship programme will create opportunity to take away flared gas going by the provision of Petroleum Act, and will also authorized gas commercialization through third party companies to promote investment draw people who are qualified technically, who have the capability and experience to work in Niger Delta to promote and support gas flare to market.
Meanwhile, we are currently doing some form of preparatory evaluation process that will enable us screen and collate the list of companies that are qualify to the next stage,” he said.