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Senate probes Shell over JVA breach, seeks $200m refund

The Senate, Wednesday, constituted an ad-hoc committee to investigate Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) over breach of the Joint Venture Agreement (JVA) it had with…

The Senate, Wednesday, constituted an ad-hoc committee to investigate Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) over breach of the Joint Venture Agreement (JVA) it had with Nigeria.

The ad-hoc committee chaired by Senator Aliyu Abdullahi, was mandated to probe the Oil Mining Lease granted to SPDC between 1959 to 1989, and 1989 to 2019 under the SPDC/NNPC JVA and refund $200 million or any amount short of what was paid by SPDC and others the federal government.

Senator George Sekibo (PDP, Rivers East) had moved a motion observing that the SPDC/NNPC Joint Venture Agreement (JVA) on a 30-year Oil Mining Lease (OML) from 1959 to 1989, granted by the defunct DPR now Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NUPRC) and the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, contravenes provisions of the Petroleum Act 1969 stipulating 20-year term.

The lawmaker said the $200m loss which is equivalent to N83.130 billion could have been of great value to the economy of the nation.

Explaining the loss, Sekibo said the first OML was illegally extended by 10 years ending 1989 instead with the government losing fees, taxes, rents and royalties of $120m for the 10 years.

He also said, “Upon the expiration of the initial Oil Mining Lease in 1989, SPDC/NNPC JV, was granted another 30-year OML again from 1st July 1989 to 30th June, 2019, by the Ministry of Petroleum Resource/DPR instead of the 20 years lease period prescribed by the Petroleum Act, which is contrary to paragraph 10 of the First Schedule to the said Act.”

Sekibo also said in the second instance of extra 10 years which ended in 2019, the government lost another $80m, totaling $200m.

 

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