The Chairman of Nigerdock Nigeria Plc FZE, Mr. Anwar Jarmakani has raised the alarm that paucity of jobs for indigenous contractors in Nigeria’s oil and gas industry would lead to unemployment and make Nigeria uncompetitive.
Speaking on Monday at the Snake Island facility of the company during the sail-away ceremony of the Ofon Phase 2 platforms fabricated by his company for Total E & P Nigeria Limited, Jarmakani argued that a consistent work programme should be developed for indigenous contractors to train and employ the youths of the country.
According to him, a stop-start programme will keep the contractors and the rest of the country uncompetitive, thus hindering them from reaching their full potential.
“During the peak of projects, Nigerdock had over 5,000 highly trained professionals employed; unfortunately as these projects are reaching their close-out, the number will continue to reduce. A consistent work programme must be developed for champions of industry like Nigerdock, so that we can keep employing the great youths of this nation and train them to be leaders in their craft and trade. We will be able to have a more sustainable investment model and we can be more competitive and economical in our market,” he explained.
Jarmakani also disclosed that the Ofon platform was the first engineering, procurement, construction and onshore commissioning (EPC) contract awarded to an indigenous contractor.
“Following the start of this project, it has been a celebration of one milestone after another, culminating into the full completion and delivery and of the project work scope. The project will bring about additional oil and gas production from 25,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day to 65,000 barrels per oil equivalent per day. It also helps to stop gas flaring on Ofon and deliver gas to Bonny LNG plant via Amenam field. This injection of gas feedstock will significantly boost the domestic gas market and provide critical power for Nigeria’s domestic and industrial needs in line with the federal government’s power sector objectives,” he added.
In his speech, the Managing Director of Total Upstream Companies in Nigeria, Mr. Nicolas Terraz said Ofon Phase 2 wellhead platforms were entirely built in Nigeria, under an EPC contract awarded in September 2011 to Nigerdock.
According to him, the jackets of these two platforms were delivered and installed offshore in 2014.
“Today’s event marks the successful completion and sail-away of the topsides. These construction works generated employment of 3,000 Nigerians over a period of four years, and supported the development of many local subcontractors,” Terraz said.
Terraz reiterated his company’s commitment to safety, stressing that for the construction of the Ofon wellhead platforms, five million manhours of work were completed with zero lost time injury.
“This performance is not the result of chance; it is the result of a continuous commitment of all, day after day, to the safety of activities. It is a result that both Total and Nigerdock can be proud of,” he added.
In his remarks, the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Mr. Patrick Obah, represented by the agency’s Director of Monitoring and Evaluation, Mr. Tunde Adelana recalled that Nigerdock had recorded great milestones in the past.
He appreciated the efforts of the over 3,000 Nigerians who worked on the Ofon Phase 2 wellhead platforms, describing Nigerdock as a local content flagbearer in Nigeria.
Group General Manager in charge of National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS), a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mr. Dafe Sejebor also lauded Nigerdock for the feat and pledged NNPC’s cooperation to ensure availability of jobs for the local contractors that had demonstrated competence in challenging jobs.