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April 3, 2020

Covid-19: Nigeria’s DPR tells O&G companies to cut staff at sites

Nigeria’s Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has instructed oil and gas firms to reduce workforce and practice social distancing at project sites.

By Himaja Ganta

Nigeria’s Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has instructed oil and gas firms to practice social distancing at project sites. The measure is part of the government’s plans to stem the spread of the Covid-19 outbreak in the country.

The DPR reported the present situation as a force majeure, meaning operators will be granted extensions to their licenses due to lost drilling time.

Last month, DPR instructed oil and gas firms to reduce the workforce on offshore platforms.

DPR director Sarki Auwalu said: “All operators and their contractors are to ensure strict compliance with relevant government directives and limit the number of personnel at project/construction sites accordingly.

“The current situation is considered ‘force majeure’ to ensure the safety and welfare of all personnel and to contain the spread of COVID-19.”

Auwalu has also advised all operators and their contractors to comply with the government’s directives on social distancing, curfew, and lockdown.

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Auwalu added: “Consequently, we expect demobilisation of personnel from these sites to the extent required to satisfy the above requirements.”

On 2 April, ten new confirmed cases of Covid-19 were recorded in Nigeria, with total confirmed cases count at 184 in the country. Authorities have reported two deaths from Covid-19 so far.

Coronavirus global impact

Covid-19 cases have crossed one million globally, with the pandemic being responsible for more than 52,000 deaths to date.

Italy is now the second-most heavily affected country with around 115,200 cases, followed by Spain at 112,060 cases and Germany at 84,790 cases. China’s cases stand at 82,440, while the US has the most confirmed Covid-19 cases.

Meanwhile, Italy recorded the most fatalities with about 13,900 deaths reported until now. The US reported 5,980 deaths from Covid-19 coronavirus so far.

On 2 April, Spain reported that 950 people had died in the past 24 hours, the highest death toll of any country in one day. The total fatalities in the country stood at 10,350.

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