Bayelsa: APC raises alarm over alleged plans to sale state-owned oil field

October 22nd, 2019

By Ezeocha Nzeh

The All Progressives Congress (APC), yesterday called on the the Economics and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate the shocking details exposing the plans by the Peoples Democratic party (PDP) led government in Bayelsa state to sell off an oil field, Atala Marginal Field (OML 46) belonging to the state, months to the Governor’s handover.

The party regretted that the Bayelsa State government has in a memo, which was made available to men notified the management of the oil field of its decision to sale off the firm, which is the inheritance of the people of Bayelsa

This is coming after the APC had earlier alerted and sought EFCC investigation over Governor Dickson alleged illegal withdrewal and diversion of N17.5 billion from bank accounts belonging to the state government to prosecute the November 16 Bayelsa governorship election in the state.

In a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja on Tuesday, the APC deputy spokesman, Yekini Nabena, alleged that the Peoples Democratic Party-led government in Bayelsa was planning to sell the oil field to fund the forthcoming governorship election.

“Our law enforcement and anti graft agencies cannot fold its arms while the state is being robbed to enrich the pockets of a few people and fund the election of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state.

“The EFCC and NFIU must take immediate action before the outgoing Governor Dickson and his cronies bankrupt the state and sell our resources to themselves.

“Atala-OML 46, which was awarded to Bayelsa state by the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), a subsidiary of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) in 2003 is managed by the Bayelsa Oil Company Limited (BOCL). Hardy Oil Nigeria Limited (HONL) and Century Exploration and Production Limited (CEPL) are technical and financial services providers,” the statement noted

Details of the planned sale of the oil field, according to the APC chieftain are contained in a September 5, 2019 leaked letter by Bayelsa Oil Company Limited (BOCL), Secretary/Legal Adviser, Barr. Oruah C. Mark to BOCL’s Board Chairman, titled: “RE: SALE OF 41% OUT OF BOCL’S 51% PARTICIPATING INTEREST IN ATALA MARGINAL FIELD (OML 46) TOGETHER WITH ITS OPERATORSHIP TO HALKIN GLOBAL INVESTMENT LIMITED.”

A scanned copy of the letter indicating the government’s decision was made available to the media on Tuesday by the APC chieftain

Nabena alleged that governor Dickson has collaborated with the Managing Director of the BOCL, Mr Ebikabowei C. Dorgu, to assign 41% out of BOCL’s 51% Participating Interest in Atala Marginal Field together with its operatorship to Halkin Global Investment Limited (HGIL).

Warning of a looming devastating loss to the state, if the government is not checked and stopped from its plans to undertake the sale of the oil field, Nabena noted, “It is my opinion that whosoever is directing the approval of this transaction must be the end-point or overall beneficiary of the transaction; while BOCL, its staff and Bayelsa State as a whole will lose terribly.

“Sequel to the foregoing, it is highly recommended that the activities of the MD concerning his secret dealings (one-man-show) regarding the management of BOCL, Atala Marginal Field (OML 46), OPL 240, BOCL’s lawful Partners and potential investors be called to order or checked immediately in order to forestall the apparent evil intention.”

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