Nigerian billionaire Arthur Eze is building two primary schools in Yirol and Rumbek, two communities in South Sudan, located northwest of Juba, the country’s capital.
The schools being built as a corporate social responsibility project by Eze’s Oranto Petroleum Ltd is estimated at over $800,000. The company said that the project will be executed by local construction company Dynamic Supplies and Construction Limited, in line with its policy to significantly engage local human and material resources in all its activities in the Republic of South Sudan.
“The construction of these two schools is a reflection of Oranto’s engagement to invest in social infrastructure in all areas where we operate in Africa,” said Prince Arthur Eze, Founder and Executive Chairman of Oranto Petroleum. “Oil has to benefit all citizens and education is key to development. We are only going to see true peace and development in Africa when we leave no child behind and continue to invest in our human resources. I am thankful that I have been blessed and I have a chance to bless others.”
Oranto, which has assets in Nigeria, Liberia, Guinea, Gambia and the UK, signed an Exploration and Production Sharing Agreement (EPSA) with the South Sudanese Ministry of Petroleum in March 2017, committing to the development of the 24,415-square kilometer acreage. Following a competitive tender process, geophysical specialist BGP was selected to perform an airborne gravity and magnetic survey of the contract area, Block B3. Oranto completed data acquisition on Block B3 in the second quarter of 2017 and is currently in the data interpretation stage. The block is believed to be highly prospective, with productive parts of the Muglad Basin to the northwest and estimated reserves in place of more than 3 billion barrels of oil.
The company says the construction of the state-of-the-art schools signals a further boost to value addition to the people of South Sudan from their oil and gas resources.
South Sudan is emerging out of a civil war that caused close on 400,000 deaths. Added to the deaths are billions lost in oil revenue as normal exploration and production activities could not go on. Now that things have calmed following a power-sharing peace deal signed in August, expanded production is now on the cards and more companies like Oranto will become more actively involved in South Sudan.
The country’s Petroleum Minister, Hon. Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth said: “We are delighted to be working with such an investor as Oranto in the development of South Sudan’s oil sector.
“Oranto has proven to be a reliable partner, committed to support both the growth of South Sudan’s local content and the socio-economic development of our communities,” Gatkouth added.