Nigeria: Govt Wades Into Lekoil, Metallon Rift

7 January 2021

The Federal Government through the Ministry of Petroleum Resources has objected to the tactics adopted by South African company, Metallon Corporation Limited to takeover LEKOIL Nigeria Limited.

The objection is contained in a letter from the ministry signed by the Honourable Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva.

Metallon Corporation, a South African company and a 15.10% shareholder in Lekoil had in November 2020 called for an Extraordinary General Meeting with a proposition to change Lekoil's chairman and also introduce three new members into the company's board under the guise of improving management oversight. The move, if left unchallenged, could give Metallon control of LEKOIL Nigeria and its strategic oil and gas assets in Nigeria.

"... such significant change of shareholding can only be carried out in close adherence with the Guidelines and Procedures for obtaining Consent to the Assignment of interest in Oil and Gas Assets dated 11th August 2014, issued pursuant to the Powers of the Honouroble Minister of Petroleum Resources under the Petroleum Act. 3," the minister said.

"Articles 3 & 4 of the Guidelines of Ministerial Consent sets out the key elements of assignment of ownership and control of interests in Oil and Gas Assets and the requirements for securing Ministerial Consent.

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