How the notorious OPL 245 cost Nigeria a whopping $6 billion   

28 November 2018 : The controversial deepwater block Oil Prospecting Licence (OPL) 245 deal which led Nigeria to lose $6 billion could have fund Nigeria’s combined annual federal health and education budgets- not once, but TWO TIMES! 

On Monday, November 26, 2018, during a presentation of an analysis jointly inaugurated by the Human and Environmental Development Agency, Global Witness, RE: Common and The Corner House, this was Brough into attention.

According to the report, the oil giant slyly capitalised on the 2011 presidential election to get the federal government to sign the deal. 

Although both Shell and Eni outrightly denied any wrongdoing, reiterating the fact that they had acted correctly in the purchase of OPL 245. This alleged deal has roped in these two giants along with quite a few senior executives. 

How did this go down for Nigeria?

Nigeria lost an estimated $4.5 billion based on 2003 fiscal terms on the deal, while the federal government lost N5.86 billion over the lifetime of the project based on 2005 fiscal terms.( Assuming the oil price to be $70 a barrel)

Don Hubert, founder and president of Resources for Development Consulting, said the fiscal terms governing the OPL 245 deal only favoured Shell and Eni.

“The payment of $1.1 billion dollars in 2011 was not only a payment to secure rights to OPL 245, but the payment also served fiscal terms that were highly generous to the IOCs (International Oil Companies) but were highly detrimental to the government of Nigeria,” he said.

“The lack of profit oil in the current fiscal terms that is governing OPL 245 will result, our analysis shows, in a loss to the Nigerian people of at least $4.5 billion.”

Barnaby Pace from Global Witness said the report reveals how the terms of the agreement were in favour of the two oil mammoths. Pace said globally there is call on the Nigerian government to revoke the licence so that its estimated $6 billion losses will be stopped in its track. "We also call for contracts to be made public.

Middlemen in the Malabu deal enjoys Jail terms

Emeka Obi along with an Italian middleman was sentenced to serve four years Jail sentence, by a Milan Court in Aug’18.

Quick recap of the Malibu Oil deal

Royal Dutch Shell and Italian Agip-Eni - shelled out about $1.1 billion to Dan Etete, Nigeria's former petroleum minister who had unsurprisingly previously had been convicted of money laundering in France.

The payment and oil deal became a subject investigation and several Nigerian Govt. Officials allegedly received several million dollars in bribes for the enabling roles they played.

Nigeria’s OPL 245 is one of the biggest sources of untapped oil reserves on the African continent with reserves estimated at 9 billion barrels.

Reporting for EasyKobo on Wednesday , 28 November 2018 in Lagos, Nigeria

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