11 September 2012, Sweetcrude, UYO – AFREN Nigeria and Oriental Energy Resources in a Joint Venture recently assisted the Department of Petroleum Engineering in the University of Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, to fully secure her re-accreditation by the Nigerian University Commission, NUC and the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria, COREN.
The Department lost its full accreditation by the NUC in 2008, due to lack of educational infrastructure required to sustain it.
However, Afren, led by its chairman, Egbert Imomoh, entered into discussions with the University management in January 2010 on how the company could contribute to the revitalisation of the Petroleum and Chemical Engineering Department.
Following a series of meetings between Afren and Oriental Energy senior management and the university, a decision was reached to commission Professor Ekwere Peters of the University of Texas in the United States to produce a detailed plan for the project.
Accordingly, Afren and Oriental included the provision of laboratory equipment, scientific journals and textbooks for the department.
After going through the compulsory inspections by NUC and COREN respectively, the department was granted full accreditation by both bodies – NUC 2010 – 2015, and COREN 2012 – 2017.
Speaking at the ceremony in Lagos, Imomoh said, “Afren was founded in order to bridge the gap that faces indigenous companies seeking to achieve production in the upstream sector. One of the core challenges faced by local companies is the lack of a large skilled pool of petroleum engineers and this initiative is designed to revitalise the Department of Petroleum and Chemical Engineering and re-establish it as a facility that can train the next generation of Nigerian engineers.
“In an area of Nigeria so rich in petroleum resources, it is vital that efforts are made to bolster students in that area’s access to quality education and opportunities, and we are proud to be playing a part in making that hope a reality.”
Alhaji Mohammed Indimi, Chairman of Oriental, added that, “I am delighted at the re-accreditation of the department and we are strongly committed to the communities in which we operate in. Together with our partner, Afren Nigeria, we will continue to work towards achieving our overall aim of a people-centred culture which enhances the conditions necessary for technical and business excellence.”
Speaking on behalf of the university Vice Chancellor, the Head of Department, Prof. Aniedi O. Ette, who is also the chairman of the University of Uyo Afren Oil Collaboration Committee, said, “Nigeria has a proud history of educational achievement and we are grateful for the support Afren and Oriental have provided to support our successful efforts to return the Department of Petroleum Engineering to its rightful position and status.
“We have a vision to train the next generation of oil and gas professionals and today marks a major step in our journey towards achieving this. We encourage other companies to emulate Afren’s example.”
Afren and Oriental have a long term commitment to further develop the capacity of Nigerian universities to build the capabilities required to create a new generation of local talent capable of operating and driving growth in the oil and gas sector.