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Seplat in the dark, as Buhari reverses self on approval of ExxonMobil deal

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Seplat Energy has informed its investors that the company is holding discussion with the authorities to avert the acquisition of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (MPNU) from failing.

This is as it informed the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) that it is unaware President Muhammadu Buhari has reversed the ministerial approval earlier granted on the deal.

Earlier on Thursday, reports had circulated that President Buhari had withdrawn his approval of Seplat acquiring MPNU from ExxonMobil, three days after consenting to the agreement.

Buhari decided to back the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC), after the oil industry regulator countered his approval of the deal, having said only NUPRC had the right to approve the acquisition.

“It has become clear that the various agencies involved in decision had not coordinated well among themselves and having looked at all of the facts with all of the ramifications, the president decided the position of the regulator is to be supported.” presidential spokesperson, Garba Shehu, told Premium Times.

Read also:ExxonMobil deal: Seplat Energy reacts to allegations of impropriety

However, in a statement Ripples Nigeria obtained from Seplat’s filing to the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX), the oil and gas company said it hasn’t received official notification of such decision and is seeking clarification from the relevant authorities.

In the statement signed by Seplat’s Chief Financial Officer, Emeka Onwuka, the company said, “Seplat Energy has become aware of a news report that Ministerial Approval of the Company’s proposed acquisition of the entire share capital of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (“MPNU”) has been withdrawn.

“Seplat Energy has received no official notification of such a decision and is seeking clarification from the relevant authorities. We will continue to work with all parties to achieve a successful outcome to the proposed acquisition and will provide an update in due course.”

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