From Tunde Omolehin, Sokoto
The federal government has been urged to spearhead the exploration of oil in the Sokoto Basin area of old Sokoto State.
Governor of Sokoto State Aminu Waziri Tambuwal made the call on behalf of the governments of Kebbi, and Zamfara that made up the Basin states.
Speaking at the First Quarter 2021 Public Lecture Series at the Usmanu Danfodio University (UDU), Sokoto, chaired by his Kebbi State counterpart, Abubakar Atiku Bagudu, Tambuwal said the states are ready to collaborate with the NNPC in exploring Sokoto Basin.
He pointed out that the initial unsuccessful attempt to seek oil deposits in Touareg Basin, which predates Oloibiri, was that of ELF expedition seventy years ago.
‘Later in the 80s, during Shagari’s administration, I was told by late Sultan Dasuki, of blessed memory, that the same ELF was invited here again. He, himself, undertook a trip to France under the then regime, and; they came back. Again, the same story,’ the governor recalled.
He urged the NNPC to support such exploration, assuring that ‘we are willing and ready to collaborate with you in that regard. Whatever you want us to do as governments, for these states, we are ready to do that.
‘We will give you all the enablers. Whatever you want us to do we will do for us to bring out what we have underneath for the common advantage or use of our country.
‘We are not in competition with anybody. We do not claim the ownership of these resources. What we are saying is that the resources are for the Federal Republic of Nigeria and they are here.’
The NNPC Group Managing Director, Mele Kyari, who delivered the lecture entitled, “Navigating Energy Transition and the Imperatives of University-Industry Collaboration”, said although the corporation is desirous of a beneficial energy transition regime.