Chineme Okafor in Abuja
The chairman of Brass Liquefied Natural Gas Limited (LNG), Dr. Jackson Gaius-Obaseki, has said the LNG project has not lost its value and can still contribute to Nigeria’s economic development.
Gaius-Obaseki also stated that President Muhammadu Buhari will not abandon the LNG project, adding that his administration has the record of completing inherited projects and in some cases, improve on them.
He stated these at the 2019 Annual General Meeting of the company where he noted that going by the precedents of Buhari’s administration, the LNG project was on course especially as it holds immense opportunities for the Nigerian economy.
“It is a good project any day. The LNG outlook shows that demand would keep progressing. Today, this government, something you cannot take from them, they do not abandon projects. Even projects they met, they picked up, completed and improved on it. It is just for shareholders to say they want to do it and it would be done.
“The shareholders were all here today, they approved the budget for 2020 to keep activities going. I made it very clear to them that come early next year, they must make a decision. You cannot keep a project at minimal activity for a long time, because time does not wait for anyone,” Gaius-Obaseki said.
He further explained that the federal government, the shareholders and all other stakeholders had over the years demonstrated their commitment and support for the project.
According to him, the stakeholders have also shown huge enthusiasm towards ensuring the early delivery and realisation of the BrassLNG project.
He said that the board of the company would undertake a strategic review of the project, aimed at developing a clear and purposeful way-forward for the company and its shareholders in the coming year.
Gaius-Obaseki disclosed that the company had undertaken a number of cost-cutting measures, such as the movement to a new office building; renegotiation of solicitors’ fees regarding the letters of engagement; relocation and consolidation of its network and services infrastructure; and the implementation of online backup for its essential services.
He said: “Our safety records remained unblemished; no security threat has been reported over the project’s interest; we completed the downward review of project site contracts and successfully commenced the implementation of same with a view to reducing costs.
“The London Disaster Recovery site has been successfully shutdown and some of the devices moved to Lagos to provide additional hardware redundancy. As a direct result of these moves, we have significantly reduced information and communication (ICT) operational cost.
“The company has invested reasonably in the provision of clean power and adequate cooling to support ICT infrastructure to enable the delivery of consistent, available and reliable service.”
The chairman added that the key assumptions in the project’s economic model have been updated, while pre-construction civil works, such as site preparations and perimeter fencing, in respect of Ewoama Health Centre had been completed.
“Management in conjunction with the senior representatives from the shareholders continues to work tirelessly towards finding solutions to the challenges and will not rest until they are fully surmounted,” he said.