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NCDMB Boss Commissions Oil and Gas Institute in Uyo

Nigeria’s drive for local content in the oil and gas industry has been boosted with the take-off of a specialised oil and gas institute in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, equipped with world-class facilities for human capital development in competencies where the country has been deficient and dependent on foreign expertise. The development elicited rapturous responses from the leadership of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), top officials of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, and chief executives of oil and gas companies.

At the commissioning of the Standard Institute of Technology (SIT) held as part of the recently concluded 2022 Practical Nigerian Content Workshop, the Executive Secretary of the NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Kesiye Wabote, hailed the entrepreneurial passion of the proprietor, Mr. Nsidibe Alexander (FNATE), assuring him of maximum support from the Board, while the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Amb. Gabriel Aduda, promised, “At every international forum we will not fail to make this Institute [SIT] known.”

Engr. Wabote noted that the Institute addresses capacity gaps not only in Nigeria’s oil and gas industry but other vital sectors of the economy, pointing out that the initiative of Mr. Alexander is “proof that Nigerian businesses are taking up the challenge to grow their outfits and contribute to the development of in-country capacities and capabilities.” According to him, “As technology is evolving it is important to constantly acquire new knowledge and skills through training and retraining as individuals or as an organisation.”

In a brief account of the business evolution that has yielded the institute, a subsidiary of Standard Testing and Inspection Services Limited, the NCDMB boss said, “The company started off as an active service provider in the oil and gas industry with focus in manpower supply, non-destructive testing, and related services,” adding, “This move to diversify into human capacity development is strategic.”

Appreciative as he was of the success story of Standard Testing and Inspection Services (STIS), the NCDMB boss challenged its chief executive to design courses that will prepare young Nigerians for the challenges that would come with the impending energy transition. He noted that energy transition would present new demands in terms of skill sets and the Nigerian training institutes should begin to design training programmes that would build the capacity of young Nigerians in that area.

While calling on companies in the oil and gas sector to emulate the dynamism and trailblazing strides of the STIS boss, he emphasised that indigenous companies have to support other local businesses to ensure a thriving supply chain of oil and gas industry and it can be done without compromising standards.”

In his address, the Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Standard Testing and Inspection Services, Mr. Nsidibe Alexander, said technology transfer and human capacity development were top priorities for the firm and having put in some 20 years of service in the petroleum industry, he decided that the time was ripe to train others, particularly youths in critical competencies needed to grow indigenous capacity.

The Petroleum Training Institute (PTI) graduate, who also received further technical training in Aberdeen, United Kingdom, thanked the NCDMB for the motivation he received through the Board’s dogged commitment to the growth of in-country capacity and capabilities and its business-friendly approach to enforcement of regulations. According to him, “The Executive Secretary is the man who has made us to stand tall, to compete with the multinationals.”

The Group MD said the STI is affiliated to reputable international training organisations and that “People trained here are issued certificates recognised in Nigeria and overseas.”

As part of the formal commissioning ceremonies, guests were taken on facility tour to the workshops of the Institute, where they saw firsthand the state-of-the-art equipment and machines. Among the guests were the Secretary to the State Government, Akwa Ibom State, Dr. Emmanuel E. Ekuwem, who represented the State Governor, captains of industry in oil and gas sector, the Deputy Chief Executive Officer of Ghana Petroleum Commission, Prince Benjamin Abuage, and the Commissions Director of Local Content, Mr. Kwaku Boateng.


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