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State set to pay for oil field land

Muhammad Swazuri
Outgoing NLC chairman Muhammad Swazuri. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The State is expected to shell out billions to more than 516 landowners for parcels in the oil-rich South Lokichar Basin in Turkana County.

This will pave the way for the planned development of a pipeline and oil processing facility in the basin that includes a $1.8 billion (Sh180 billion) investment for upstream activities.

Tullow Oil is developing the Lokichar-Lamu crude oil pipeline project in partnership with Africa Oil, French energy firm Total and the Kenyan government.

The 750km-long export pipeline will run from the South Lokichar basin to the Coast.

In a gazette notice dated Friday, February 8, 2019, outgoing National Land Commission (NLC) chairman Muhammad Swazuri said the planned acquisition would affect more than 516 landowners in the Amosing, Ngamia and Twiga oil fields.

“In pursuance of section 107 (5) and 162 (2) of the Land Act, 2012 the National Land Commission on behalf of the Ministry of Petroleum and Mining, State Department of Petroleum gives notice that the government intends to acquire the land depicted by and falling within the following co-ordinates in Turkana County for upstream development, South Lokichar Oil Project,” said Dr Swazuri.

“Plans depicting the land may be inspected during working hours at the office of the National Land Commission, Ardhi House, Third Floor, Room 305, 1st Ngong Avenue Nairobi. Notice of inquiry will be published in the Kenya Gazette as per section 112(1) of the Land Act, 2012.”

Tullow Oil has already awarded contracts to Australia’s WorleyParsons and UK-based energy services company Wood in connection with the South Lokichar onshore oil field project in Kenya.

As part of the project, Tullow plans to develop the Ngamia and Amosing fields to produce an estimated 60,000 barrels a day of oil, which will be carried to the Lamu port on the Kenyan coast through a 900km export pipeline.

The South Lokichar basin comprises the 10BB and 13T blocks located in Turkana in the north-western part of Kenya.

Both blocks comprise multiple oilfields located throughout the basin, which represents one of the last Great Rift basins.