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Kenya’s Petroleum Regulator Resigns over Graft Allegation

Pavel Oimeke, director general of Kenya’s Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA), has resigned.

He is in court for allegedly demanding a $4,500 (Sh500,000) bribe from an employee of a petrol filling station. He was arrested by detectives from the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) in December last year for

EPRA had closed the station because of sales of unauthorised fuel. Despite paying a fine, EPRA allegedly continued to delay authorising the reopening of the filling station.

The charges stated that on December 2, 2020, Mr. Oimeke requested for a financial benefit of $4,500 (Sh500,000) from Wycliffe Odhiambo Oyoo, allegedly sending the message through a private messenger App, and assuring him that he would authorise the opening of the station: Nyang’ina Filling Station in Oyugis, Homa Bay County.

The EACC said an employee at the fuel station handed over the cash to Oimeke at his office. The employee had tipped off the anti-corruption agency. Following the handover, the EACC arrested Oimeke.

The anti-corruption court, headed by chief magistrate Douglas Ogoti, heard that on December 10, Mr. Oimeke received a bribe of $1,820 (Sh200,000) from Mr Oyoo, so that he could authorise the opening of the filling station.

The EACC said Oyoo handed over the cash to Oimeke at his office after he had tipped off the anti-corruption agency. Following the handover, the EACC arrested the EPRA chief.

At the first hearing, the court ordered the EPRA chief to deposit a bond of $6,400 (Sh700,000 )or an alternative cash bail of $1,820 (Sh200,000), to secure his release. Oimeke paid the cash.

Oimeke has had a stormy time in office since the commencement of his second three-year term on August 1, 2020, when an EPRA board meeting decided to send him on leave pending the outcome of a case where a petitioner, Emmanuel Wanjala, challenged the legality of the tenure. Wanjala had accused Oimeke of “abuse of office, mismanagement of a public institution and public resources, corruption, tribalism and favouritism which is uncharacteristic of a public servant”. The EPRA reinstated Oimeke on October 9, 2020 following a court hearing on October 6, 2020.

 

 


Andrew Mackenzie Is the Next Chairman of Shell

The Board of Directors of Royal Dutch Shell plc has announced the appointment of Sir Andrew Mackenzie as the new Company Chair with effect from the conclusion of Shell’s 2021 Annual General Meeting, scheduled for May 18, 2021.

He will succeed Chad Holliday who will step down on May 18 having served as Chair for six years and as a Board Director since September 2010.

Mackenzie, a British national, joined Shell’s Board in October 2020, after a distinguished career in the energy, petrochemicals and resources sector, latterly as Group CEO of BHP from 2013 to 2019. From 2004 to 2007, at Rio Tinto, he was Head of Industrial Minerals and Diamonds. Prior to this, over a 22-year career at BP, he held senior leadership roles in exploration, research and development, and chemicals.

“His contributions to geochemistry and earth science led to his appointment as a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2014”, Shell says in a statement, “and he received a knighthood in 2020 for his services to business, science and technology”.

The statement adds that Mackenzie is bringing to Shell “his experience of leadership, his global outlook, and a deep understanding of the energy business and climate action”.

The search for the new Chair was led by Euleen Goh, Deputy Chair and Senior Independent Director. The thorough and robust process included engagement with some of Shell’s larger investors, seeking input on the skills, attributes and sector knowledge that they considered important for the role. In addition to proven experience of leading a large, complex international organisation, the requirement was for someone with significant experience in capital discipline and with the ability to balance, and judge the timing, of the transformational changes that Shell needs to make.

 


Nine Journalists Selected for Premium Times’ Oil and Gas Media Fellowship

PARTNER CONTENT/PETROLEUM PEOPLE

 The Premium Times Centre for Investigative Journalism (PTCIJ), through its Natural Resources and Extractives Programme (NAREP), has selected nine journalists across Nigeria for its flagship NAREP Oil and Gas Media Fellowship.

This fellowship aims to advance natural resource journalism in Nigeria. It is designed to train and build journalists that can effectively report and analyse the oil and gas sector by equipping them with the tools and resources they need.

Following the organisation’s call, PTCIJ received 1,429 applications from journalists and non-journalists across the country. Out of these, seventeen journalists were shortlisted and nine of them have been finally selected from across eight media organisations following interviews by an internal selection committee.

The selected journalists underwent a three-day intensive training which introduced them to the oil and gas sector. The training started on the 2nd of March and ended on the 4th of March, 2021.

The participants were trained by experts on a range of issues including but not limited to revenue management and distribution in the oil and gas sector, the impact of the management of oil and gas on the quality of life of Nigerians, laws and regulations in the oil and gas sector, review of the underrecovery regime, use of the freedom of information act, data presentation and analysis, making sense of the figures in reporting the oil and gas sector among others.

The fellows will be engaged for a total of three months during which they will work with mentors and will be required to provide at least two stories per month.

“Oil and gas sector operations in Nigeria have traditionally been opaque with little or no transparency on the part of the government”, says Akintunde Babatunde , Manager of NAREP. “This lack of openness has led to zero accountability, mismanagement of funds, revenue leakages and above all, the inability of the government to meet its financial obligation and to raise the quality of life of Nigerians,” he explains.

“Through the NAREP fellowship, PTCIJ plans to combine the tools of data aggregation, civic technology and investigative journalism to advance transparency and accountability in the extractive sector.”

About NAREP

NAREP aims to strengthen the capacity of media and civil society to demand transparency and accountability in the extractive sector by enhancing media and civil society collaboration in the reporting of activities in the industry. It seeks to highlight issues, and help set the agenda for the government in designing strategies for revenue diversification by looking beyond oil.

The training was supported by Natural Resource Charter.

 


Stéphane Michel is TOTAL’s New President Gas, Renewables & Power (GRP)

TOTAL has appointed Stéphane Michel as its President Gas, Renewables & Power (GRP) and a Total Executive Committee member, a position previously held by Philippe Sauquet, who has exercised his retirement rights.

Mr. Michel, a former Energy Advisor to a former French Finance Minister, resumed work on March 1, 2021.

Prior to the promotion, he was Senior Vice President Middle East & North Africa, Exploration & Production. Laurent Vivier succeeded him in that position in January 2021.

“The Gas, Renewables & Power segment has a key role to play in the growth, value creation and transformation of TOTAL into a broad energy company. We are very pleased to welcome Stéphane Michel to the Executive Committee,” commented Patrick Pouyanné, the company’s Chairman & CEO. “

TOTAL’s Executive Committee now consists of:

  • Patrick Pouyanné, Chief Executive Officer
  • Arnaud Breuillac, President, Exploration & Production
  • Helle Kristoffersen, President Strategy-Innovation
  • Stéphane Michel, President, Gas, Renewables & Power
  • Bernard Pinatel, President, Refining & Chemicals
  • Jean-Pierre Sbraire, Chief Financial Officer
  • Namita Shah, President, People & Social Responsibility
  • Alexis Vovk, President, Marketing & Services

 

Before Stéphane Michel became TOTAL’s SVP Middle East & North Africa, Exploration & Production in January 2014, he was the Managing Director of TOTAL E&P Qatar (2012-2014) and TOTAL E&P Libya (2011). He joined the Group in 2005, working for Downstream Asia, based in Singapore.

Stéphane Michel was born in 1973 and is a graduate of École Polytechnique (1994) and École des Mines de Paris (1997). He served as Energy Advisor to the French Finance Minister (2002-2004).

 


Yetunde Taiwo Takes Charge of Seplat’s ‘New Energy’ Portfolio, with the Gas Business

Yetunde Taiwo has been appointed the General Manager for New Energy at Seplat.

It is a position that comes with the company’s Gas Business, which she had managed before, so it’s an expanded portfolio.

Seplat is Africa’s largest homegrown E&P company.

Until January 2021, Taiwo was Chief Executive Officer of the ANOH Gas Processing Company (AGPC), the incorporated Joint Venture owned equally between Seplat and the Nigerian Gas Company (NGC), which manages a $700Million midstream development that will monetise 300Million standard cubic feet produced every day from the Assa North /Ohaji South fields, straddling Shell operated Oil Mining Lease (OML) 21 and Seplat operated OML 53, onshore eastern Nigeria.

Taiwo took the AGPC job after three and half years as the first GM Gas (or Head of Gas Business as it is called), where she oversaw the development of one of the fastest growing domestic gas businesses in Nigeria.  On her watch, Seplat grew its operated gas production capacity from 300Million standard cubic feet per day (300MMscf/d) to 525MMscf/d.

Her new role of superintending the New Energy unit involves the increase of gas products to be monetised in the form of LPG, CNG and other gas derivatives, with opportunity framing in the renewable energy space. “A different set of skills is required to get into renewables”, Roger Brown the company’s CEO, told London South East last November, but he added that the New Energy unit, would provide guidance for the company.

“We are looking at LPG, Liquid Petroleum Gas on all of our gas plants and that can be utilised in the local market”, Mr. Brown told London South East. “We’re looking to Compress Natural gas (CNG) and, we are looking further down the value chain potentially into supplying smaller scale, probably not retail but certainly, smaller scale wholesale and customers. And then, through that, we look at what renewable energy means for Nigeria into the future and it’s got huge potential, particularly, in solar. We’ve got a lot of the sun all year round here. That will be a great renewable fuel source for the country. And what we really want to do is that we need to get the grid system up to a level we are having more of the gas going through it and then, the grid will rely on grids solar power rather than, off grid small scale. So that’s something we are looking at”. That statement, effectively framed Mrs. Taiwo’s key job responsibilities

Taiwo started her career as a reservoir engineer with Chevron Nigeria Limited in 1991, straight from National Youth Service. By the time she left the American major, for BG, in 2007, she was a planning advisor at the company’s Asset Management Division. She worked for BG as Economics manager before she showed up at Seplat in May 2011 as head of planning and economics. She joined NNPC, the state hydrocarbon company, in 2013, as General Manager, Planning at NAPIMS, the Investment arm. She was appointed head of Gas Business when she returned to Seplat in 2015.


Polarcus Struggles to Breathe

Polarcus, the marine seismic exploration firm, is in provisional liquidation.

It is not having an easy time of it.

The Oslo listed company has spoken out recently about addressing long term financing structure following financial default, and has talked of lenders withdrawing support of ongoing vessel operations, which Is the heart of its business.

“The Board has continued to have regard to the developing financial position of the Company, including the events of default that have occurred, the enforcement action which resulted in the Vessel-owning companies being transferred to a company controlled by the Lenders, and the Lenders confirming their withdrawal of continuing support of the Vessels’ operations”, Polarcus says in the latest release.

The Board “remains focused on pursuing a restructuring of its indebtedness and maintaining the underlying business as a going concern. Discussions between the Company and its creditors, including the Secured Creditors, remain ongoing”.

Polarcus says that in order to “effect a restructuring and to maximize value for all creditors, the Company filed an application with the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands seeking the appointment of Soft Touch Provisional Liquidators over the Company, with a specific mandate to work alongside the Board to pursue a restructuring in the interests of all creditors”

On 8 February 2021, David Griffin and Andrew Morrison of Suite 3212, 53 Market Street, Camana Bay, Grand Cayman KY1-1203, Cayman Islands and Lisa Rickelton of 200 Aldersgate St, Barbican, London EC1A 4HD were appointed as Joint Provisional Liquidators by an order of the Court.

The Joint Provisional Liquidators are specifically authorized by the Court to take all necessary steps to develop and propose a restructuring of the Company’s financial indebtedness with a view to making a compromise or arrangement with the Company’s creditors or any class thereof. The JPLs intend to discuss and consult with the Board wherever practicable throughout their tenure acting as agent for and on behalf of the Company, and to work alongside the Board in pursuing a restructuring and in ensuring that returns to creditors are maximized.

“The Board retains all powers of management conferred on it by the Order, subject to the appropriate and necessary oversight and monitoring of the Joint Provisional Liquidators as regards the exercise of such powers. The Board and the boards of directors of the Company’s subsidiary entities will continue, working alongside the JPLs as appropriate, to engage with the creditors, employees, other stakeholders and third parties in relation to the business and operations of the Polarcus group”.

 


Gbite Falade is Niger Delta’s New CEO

Niger Delta Exploration & Production PLC (NDEP Group) has announced the appointment of a new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) – Managing Director with effect from 10th February 2021.

Adegbite (’Gbite) Falade will join the company, bringing along some Twenty-five years of impactful and successful career across multiple sectors and continents in the energy Industry, according to a statement by Ladi Jadesinmi, NDEP’s Chairman of the board.

NDEP is a fully Integrated Energy Company which operates the 12,000Barrels of Oil Per Day (BOPD) Ogbele Marginal field, Nigeria’s first officially designated marginal field, in eastern Niger Delta basin. It runs an 11,000BOPD capacity three train modular crude oil refinery as well as a 100Million standard cubic feet per day gas processing plant, which delivers gas to the NLNG system.

“Gbite will succeed the pioneer Managing Director – Layi Fatona (Ph.D.)- who in an Interim position, had supported the running of the affairs of the company from October 2019”, Mr. Jadesinmi’s statement added.

“A First Class B.Sc. Electrical & Electronics Engineering (1995) degree graduate of the University of Ibadan, and a 200B MBA graduate of the Warwick Business School, Coventry, UK; Gbite has in the past Fourteen (14) Years, served in various Senior Executive positions in Oil, Gas, Power, and Services Sectors. With responsibilities for Engineering, Operations, Project Execution, Commercial, Client and Stakeholder Management, Strategy and Enterprise Development.

“He was previously the MD and Group COO at OilServ Group of companies based in Port Harcourt.  Prior to his last assignment, he served variously, as GM-Portfolio Development, Chief Operating Officer (COO), at Oando Energy Resources„ and Executive Director at Oando Gas and Power. He was also Petroleum Economics Discipline & Portfolio Lead for Shell EP, Africa Region”.

With the nimble and proven Technical management team, the chairman concludes: “a young but competent operating workforce and a matured Board of Directors, Gbite will be charged with leading the company, in a well charted and structured manner, to deliver the continuation and indeed enhancement of our historical steady growth”.

“We are confident that our position as Nigeria’s No-1fully Integrated Energy Company will remain, unchallenged and preserved for quite some time yet”.

 

 

 


Siemens appoints Dalia Shoukry as CFO in Egypt, its Biggest African Market

Siemens has appointed Dalia Shoukry as CFO in Egypt, effective immediately.

Shoukry has more than two decades of experience in financial roles covering the Middle East, Europe, and Africa.

Egypt is Siemens’ largest market in Africa and one of its biggest in the world. Between 2016 and 2019, under contract by the government, the German engineering firm built three combined cycle gas to power plants with total capacity of 14,400MW in Egypt. In December 2020, Siemens was awarded, by the Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company (EETC), the contract to build the new national energy control centre, in the country’s New Administrative Capital (NAC), still under construction, in the middle of the desert, some 45 kilometres east of Cairo.

Siemens is currently in discussions, with the Egyptian Ministry of Power nd Renewable Energy,  for a 500MW capacity Wind Farm in the country, under a Build, Operate and Transfer system.

All of which means that Ms. Shoukry has her job cut out.

Prior to Siemens, she was the international finance director AstraZeneca, the pharmaceutical giant.

She earned a degree in accounting from Ain Shams University. “We are very happy to welcome Dalia to our team in Egypt. Financing is a crucial component of our business, as it not only defines, manages, and oversees all budgets, but it also monitors the performance and ensures the financial health and stability of Siemens Egypt,” said Mostafa El-Bagoury, CEOof  Siemens Egypt.

Siemens has been active in Egypt ever since its founder, Werner von Siemens, laid a communications cable through the Red Sea in 1859 to link Suez and Aden..


Glencore Takes Carroll on Board

Glencore plc has appointed Cynthia Carroll, the British geologist and businesswoman, as an Independent Non-Executive Director of the Company with immediate effect.

Cynthia Carroll was the Chief Executive Officer of Anglo American, the world’s largest platinum producer, from 2007 to 2013. She was the first non-South African to hold the position. She was a non-executive director of the board of BP between 2007 and 2017.

Mrs. Carroll has over 30 years’ experience in the resources sector. She began her career as an exploration geologist at Amoco before joining Alcan. She held various executive roles there culminating in being CEO of the Primary Metal Group, Alcan’s core business

Cynthia Carroll is currently a non-executive director of Hitachi, Ltd (TYO: 6501), Baker Hughes Company (NYSE: BKR) and Pembina Pipeline Corporation (TSE: PPL). Previous non-executive appointments have included BP and the Sara Lee Corporation.

Glencore’s Chairman, Tony Hayward says the board is very pleased to welcome Cynthia Carroll, who has extensive knowledge of the resources industry as well as strong non-executive director experience.

 


Adom-Frimpong is new Chairman of Ghana’s Oil Revenue Watchdog

Ghana’s Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC), the statutory body with oversight responsibility of the management and use of the country’s petroleum revenues, has elected Kwame Adom-Frimpong as its new chairman.

Mr. Adom-Frimpong, a professor of accounting who represents the Institute of Chartered Accountants, Ghana (ICAG) on the PIAC, was elected in a unanimous decision by the Committee, drawn from 13 nominating institutions, according to a statement by the PIAC communications department. He will steer the affairs of PIAC as Chairman for one year, having taken over from Noble Wadzah, whose membership tenure on the Committee expired at the end of last year.

Adom-Frimpong is a graduate of the University of Wales, Bangor, UK (MBA) and the University of London. He obtained his Doctorate degree in Business Administration (DBA-Finance option) in 2001 from University for Professional Studies, Arcadia, USA and again had PhD in Economics Finance from the same University in 2004.

He is currently the Managing Director of Mainstream Reinsurance Company and a Partner of Adom Boafo & Associates, a firm of Chartered Accountants and Management Consultants. He worked with PricewaterhouseCoopers for five years as Audit Supervisor, five years with SSNIT as Head of Audit and ABC Brewery Company as Senior Cost and Management Accountant for four years.

Adom-Frimpong qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1990, and is the immediate past President of the Institute of Chartered of Accountants Ghana (ICAG). He is a Fellow of both the Chartered Institute of Bankers (FCIB) and the Chartered Insurance Institute of Ghana (FCIIG). He is also a Barrister-at-Law and a member of the Ghana Bar Association.

 

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