Chineme Okafor in Abuja
A former Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr. Jackson Gaius-Obaseki, has disclosed that a lot of the investment decisions that were made with International Oil Companies (IOCs) in his time at the helm of affairs of the state-run oil company, were reached during a periodic golf tournament he initiated in Abuja.
Obaseki, according to a statement from the Group General Manager, Public Affairs Division of the NNPC, Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, on Saturday in Abuja explained that the golf tourney – the GMD’s Golf Cup Tournament, provided him and industry stakeholders then the ambience to discuss oil and gas business deals, and from which he said Nigeria recorded a lot of growth in its oil industry.
According to the statement, he said this at the ceremonial tee-off of the GMD’s Golf Cup 2017 tournament at the IBB Golf Club in Abuja.
Obaseki said it afforded industry players to reconnect and build partnership that would take the Nigeria oil and gas industry to the next level even as the industry navigates through the difficult times.
“The GMD’s Golf Cup started during my time as GMD and, like I said, we were looking for an activity that will bring all the industry players together and this was one of them.
“It will surprise Nigerians that a lot of the major decisions we took at that time between us and the majors were taken on the golf course. That’s why you found out that it was a period when we recorded some appreciable growth in the oil and gas industry,” Obaseki revealed in the statement.
He stated that he was happy with the tournament, disclosing that it was part of his legacies at the NNPC. The tournament, the statement added was resuscitated after about two years of its suspension.
According to the statement, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, who was represented by the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Mr. Simbi Wabote, at the tourney, noted that it also promoted the spirit of sportsmanship and was useful for networking and rejuvenation of executives in the Nigerian oil and gas industry.