By Cynthia Alo
Eroton Exploration and Production Company Limited, Eroton, has said it would remain the Operator of OML-18 in line with the provisions of the Joint Operating Agreement, JOA, adding that any dispute whatsoever between the parties are reserved exclusively for resolution under the Dispute Resolution clause of the JOA.
The management of the company, therefore, stated that actions of the other JV partners remain illegal.
In a statement signed by the Managing Director, Dr. Emeka Onyeka, Eroton said that the company as the operator of OML-18, remains committed to transparency, integrity, and due process, and urged the public and stakeholders to disregard “any misinformation as we continue to operate in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations.”
It said further, “This statement is necessitated by the false information recently disseminated in the media on the status of operatorship of OML-18 and about Eroton Exploration and Production Company Limited.
“In complete breach of the terms of the Joint Operating Agreement (JOA) governing OML-18, and with total disregard for due process, the non-operators of OML-18; NNPC Limited (NNPC) and Sahara Field Production Limited (Sahara) (now known as OML 18 Energy Resource Limited) appointed a company, NNPC Eighteen Operating Limited as operator of OML-18,” Onyeka said.
He added that Eroton, which was validly appointed Operator of OML-18 via a legal and contractual process involving all the participating entities in the JOA, “has approached the relevant courts to defend its legal rights.”
According to him, “In addition to this, Eroton has issued Notice of Arbitration to NNPC and Sahara in accordance with the terms contained in the JOA. ‘‘On the basis of the lack of any grounds for the purported takeover of operatorship in accordance with the terms of the JOA governing the block, lack of due process and flagrant breach of the rule of law, Eroton has taken considered legal opinion to the effect that the status quo ante continues to remain the position and same will be upheld by the courts of Nigeria.’’
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