President Muhammadu Buhari has rescinded his earlier decision authorising the acquisition of Exxon Mobil shares in the United States of America by Seplat Energy Offshore Limited.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, confirmed this to the Press on Wednesday, saying his principal had decided to back the regulator, the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC),.
The commission had on Tuesday insisted on its refusal of assent to the ExxonMobil/Seplat Energy share acquisition worth $1.3 billion.
According to the presidential spokesman, President Buhari now wants NUPRC position be supported, claiming that the confusion set in because “various agencies involved in (the) decision had not coordinated well among themselves.”
Recall that the Presidency in statement on Monday announced that President Buhari had granted assent to the deal in which Seplat will acquire a 40 per cent stake of ExxonMobil oil assets around Akwa Ibom State.
The statement cited the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) 2021, as an incentive to drive Foreign Direct Investment and raise oil production from the assets.
But the NUPRC countered in a statement later that the Commission, in line with the provisions of the PIA 2021, is the sole regulator in dealing with such matters in the Nigerian upstream sector.