Managing Director: Babs Omotowa
Taking the reins at Nigeria LNG Limited in 2012, Babs Jolayemi Omotowa came with a stellar track record. Babs' career in the oil and gas industry began at Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) in 1993 as a management trainee where he rose rapidly to Senior operations positions in Warri, before proceeding on international assignments with Shell in the United Kingdom, Holland and Norway, serving variously as Production Asset Manager, Shipping Manager and Business Improvement Manager. In Europe, he was renowned for his re-engineering and successful turnaround performances.
He returned to Nigeria in 2006 as General Manager Supply Chain for SNEPCo (the offshore arm of Shell operations in Nigeria) and SPDC, and two years later, was subsequently appointed a Director of SPDC. He distinguished himself with his work on contracting of goods and services across both JV (Joint Venture) and PSC (Production Sharing Contracts) operations including the Engineering, Procurement and Construction agreements for the Gbaran Ubie gas project, Afam Power plant etc. In 2010, he was appointed a Director of the West African Pipeline Company (WAPCO).
When work-related deaths at SPDC reached an alarming rate, 20 per year, it was to Babs the Shell management turned to for rescue. and working without fanfare, he stemmed the ugly tide. He left an enviable record of no fatality for 600 days! It's testament not only to his tough will and persistence, but also to his utmost respect for people and human life. He was also instrumental to the increased transparency and external verification of the company's environmental performance. Until his current appointment as Chief Executive Officer of Nigeria LNG Limited, Babs was Vice President, Health, Safety, Environment, Infrastructure and Logistics for Shell companies in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Deputy Managing Director: Basheer Koko
With more than 25 years in the global oil and gas industry, Basheer Koko has a grasp of cutting edge management practices as well as a clear understanding of the delicate workings of government policies. Beginning his career in 1982 at Kaduna Refinery (NYSC), Basheer joined NNPC Crude Oil Marketing Division in 1983. He has held several key positions including: Deputy Head, NNPC London Office (1988-1991); Manager, Marketing and Sales at Eleme Petrochemicals, Port Harcourt (1997-1998); Manager, Marketing and Shipping, LNG Division (1999-2003); Office of The Group Managing Director, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (January 1999— November 2003); and Executive Director (Services) of Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company Limited (November 2003—September 2007). Earlier, he was Special Assistant to the Honourable Minister of Petroleum Resources/ OPEC President (May–November 1988) and the Technical Assistant to the Honourable Minister of State for Petroleum Resources (February—August 1998). Between 1999 and 2003, Basheer represented NNPC at NLNG MAC and SAC meetings and also participated in MOU/ SPA negotiations with potential buyers of volumes from NLNG Plus (Trains 4, 5 & 6) as the Head of NNPC Representatives. A member of the Energy Institute UK, Basheer holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Petroleum Economics from Oxford in the United Kingdom and bachelor degree in Business Administration from Ohio University, United States of America (U.S.A.). These are complemented by numerous top-of-the-shelf international courses and development attachments in Harvard University, USA; the Wharton College; University of Pennsylvania; IMD, Lussane Switzerland; and energy companies in the United Kingdom, Italy, America and Canada. Basheer was President of Calson Bermuda Limited, a NNPC/ Vitol Group Joint Venture and Managing Director, Hyson (Nig) Limited, another NNPC/ Vitol Joint Venture before he came to NLNG in 2009.
General Manager Production: Chima Isilebo
Chima is a seasoned professional with more than 30 years Oil & Gas Industry experience in both Upstream and Midstream businesses, covering diverse disciplines including Engineering/Project Management, HSSE, Business Planning/Economics, Venture Governance, LNG Commercial and Operations/Asset Management.
A 1980 graduate of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka with a First Class (Hons) degree in Mechanical Engineering, Chima joined Shell Nigeria in August 1981, and has had a series of challenging assignments in various locations both within Nigeria and around the world including, Europe (UK and the Netherlands), the Middle East (Oman) and South East Asia (Brunei and Singapore).
He served as the Operations Adviser – St Fergus, Shell UK EP and Operations Support/HSEQ Manager for Brunei LNG, before being appointed as the Start-Up Manager (in 2004) and the first Nigerian Operations Manager for Nigeria LNG in 2006.
Between 2008 and 2010, he was back in Shell Upstream International as Vice President (Gas & Power) / GM LNG Governance with responsibility for South-East Asia (based in Singapore) where he served as a Director on the Boards of a number of Shell Joint Venture companies in Brunei and Malaysia, including Brunei Shell Petroleum, Brunei LNG, Brunei Shell tankers, Brunei Gas Carriers and Shell MDS in Malaysia.
He returned to NLNG again in 2011 as the first Nigerian General Manager, Production and has already gained a reputation for a steady and balanced approach that demonstrates an interest in and respect for people
General Manager Commercial: Patrick Olinma
Patrick Olinma, Nigerian, holds a bachelor and a master of law degrees from the Universities of Benin and Lagos, as well as a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the Grand Ecole ESCP, Paris, France. He began his career as a legal counsel in Abudu, Akinyemi & Ogunde in 1990 and was managing counsel when he left the law firm to join French oil giant Total Nigeria in 1996 where, amongst other roles, he had oversight function of technical services contract and advised operations teams on host communities, conflict resolution, as well as relations with state and local government agencies. He was also lead counsel in the negotiation of various production sharing contracts and joint venture oil and gas agreements, notable among them, the $1.2 billion unitisation & unit operating agreement for the Amenam/Kpono fields off-shore, Nigeria, and the $1.06 billion gas sellers’ “direct agreement” with lenders to the Nigeria LNG Limited Trains 4 & 5 Project. He was also Secretary, Total Nigeria Pension Fund with responsibility for legal aspects of pension fund management and regulatory reporting and compliance matters. Patrick, who has a strong track record in closing complex deals, in 2005 led the 2.5 million tonnes/year LNG Sales & Purchase Agreement negotiations with Suez LNG for the Yemen LNG Project and was responsible for the 3.25 million tonnes/year LNG Sales & Purchase Agreements with BG Gas Marketing Limited and Occidental Energy Marketing Inc. for NLNG’s Train 7 Plus project. His last posting before his appointment in Nigeria LNG Limited was as Deputy General Manager (NLNG Commercial) in Total Nigeria. Patrick speaks regularly at international energy conferences around the world.
General Manager Human Resources: Yahya Lawal
Mr. Yahya Mohammed Lawal, Nigerian, holds a B.Sc. degree in Political Science from Bayero University, Kano in 1980. He is a member of International Public Relations Association [IPRA] and an Associate member of Nigerian Institute of Personnel Management [NIPM].
Mr. Lawal began his career as a School Teacher with the Zaria Local Education Authority in 1973. He joined Shell Petroleum Development Company [SPDC] Port Harcourt in 1980 as Planning and Remuneration Assistant under the NYSC scheme and thereafter worked as Personnel Officer up to 1984. The same year he left Shell to become the Head of Personnel Department in Ballarpur Glass Nigeria Limited. In July 1986 he joined the services of Kaduna Refinery [a subsidiary of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation] as Senior Personnel Officer. At various periods, he worked at KRPC; defunct Refineries Sector Headquarters and the NNPC Headquarters, Lagos as Officer-in-charge of Staff Welfare, Industrial Relations, Staff Appraisal and Discipline until 1996 when he became the Head of NNPC/NLNG Secondee Administration Unit. In 1998, he assumed the position of Deputy Manager Public Affairs Department [PAD], and then moved on to Community Relations [NAPIMS] in 2002. He later became Manager, Admin & Protocol [GPAD] before assuming the position of Manager, Human Resources Department, Services Division, PPMC Headquarters in February 2007. In February 2011, he was appointed General Manager, Human Resources, and in May 2011 was seconded to Nigeria LNG Limited as General Manager, Human Resources.
Yahya has had an almost 30 year career spanning different human relations disciplines – Staff Appraisal and Discipline, Secondee Administration, Public Affairs, Community Relations, Administration and Protocol, Staff Welfare, Industrial Relations and Planning and Recruitment. He has attended numerous senior management courses both locally and internationally. Mr. Lawal is married with children. His hobbies among other things include traveling and meeting new people.
General Manager Finance: Solomon Folaranmi
Solomon Segun Folaranmi is a chartered accountant with an accounting degree from University of Lagos, and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from University of Benin.
Mr Folaranmi’s career spans more than 30 years in corporate finance, project accounting, investment portfolio management, joint venture financing, capital assets oversight and investor relations.
These are complemented by numerous international courses from Cambridge to Oxford.
He began his career at the University of Lagos as a Graduate Assistant before joining NNPC in 1983 as a treasury accountant. In 1986, he moved to Nigerian Gas Company Limited where he spent 18 years as accountant in various gas projects including Imo-river/Aba Gas supply project, Alakiri/Onne Gas supply project, Escravos/Lagos Gas pipeline project, Obigbo/Afam Gas supply project and several others. He rose through the ranks to become Finance Manager, Head of Account in 2004.
In 2005, he left Nigerian Gas Company Limited for NNPC London office where he served at different times as Finance Manager and Acting General Manager, NNPC London Office before proceeding to NNPC Pension Fund Limited in 2012 as the General Manager, Finance. At the pension fund arm of the corporation, he managed an investment and assets portfolio worth 270 billion Naira. He also covered the duties of Managing Director NNPC Pension Fund Ltd from June to October 2013.
In 2013, Mr. Folaranmi was appointed General Manager, Finance of Nigeria LNG Limited.
General Manager External Relations: Kudo Eresia-Eke
Kudo Eresia-Eke, a seasoned and accomplished communicator and administrator with rich experience in the media, academia, government and the oil and gas industry. He holds a Ph.D in Political Science from the University of Port Harcourt, and a Bachelors Degree in Mass Communication from the University of Lagos.
Kudo started his communication career straight from secondary school, joining the Nigerian Television Authority as a presenter and newscaster. He later served Daily Times, the Guardian Newspaper, the Rivers State Television, Radio Nigeria, Radio Rivers, Sunray Group of Newspapers, and for years was also a columnist for the Vanguard Newspaper. Kudo has a wealth of experience in Public Service, too. He served variously as Rivers State Commissioner for Information and Culture and State Director of the National Orientation Agency. He has also enjoyed teaching stints in various universities in Nigeria and South Africa and was the founding staff of the Centre for Advanced Social Science, Port Harcourt.
Since joining the oil and gas industry 14 years ago as pioneer Community Relations and Development Manager for Nigeria LNG Limited, Kudo has served in other managerial positions including Public Affairs Manager, and Government Relations Manager. He is a prolific writer with numerous publications spanning poetry, short stories, inspirational and academic essays; and a member of several professional organizationsincluding the International Association of Business Communicators.
General Manager Shipping: Temilola Okesanjo
Temilola Fatai Okesanjo, Nigerian, started his career in the maritime industry in 1981 as a Deck Cadet in the now defunct Nigerian National Shipping Lines (NNSL). He later graduated from Australian Maritime College as a Master Mariner in 1990. Soon after graduation, he worked briefly as a Master Mariner on Oil Tankers & Terminals before proceeding to World Maritime University in Malmo, Sweden, to pursue a Master of Science degree in Shipping Management which he obtained in 1994. Temilola also sat for the (London) Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers (ICS) examination, qualifying as a Chartered Shipbroker (MICS) in 1995. He has at various times worked as a Marine Superintendent/ SBM Pilot for Texaco Overseas Petroleum Company; Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC); Mobil Producing Unlimited; and Petroleum Development Company of Oman before joining NLNG in 1999 as Head of Shipping Operations. Temilola became the first Nigerian Head of the Shipping Department (Shipping Manager) in 2002 and the first Nigerian employee to rise to the position of a General Manager in 2005.
General Counsel/Company Secretary: Edith Unuigbe
Edith Unuigbe, Nigerian, holds a bachelor’s degree from Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife and a master of law degree from Harvard Law School, Harvard University in Cambridge. She is the General Counsel/ Company Secretary of Nigeria LNG Limited and Company Secretary of NLNG Ship Manning Limited. Edith began her career in 1982 with the Office of the Vice President of Nigeria in the defunct second republic during her compulsory national youth service as a Senior State Counsel, on secondment from Sherman & Sterling, Washington, DC, advisers to The Nigerian LNG Project. In 1984, she joined Kapital Merchant Bank Limited as legal officer and sub-manager. She moved up to become the company’s Legal Adviser/ Company Secretary in 1988 before leaving for Commercial Trust Bank Limited in 1990. At Commercial Trust Bank Limited, she was Head, Export Unit; Head, Financial Services; and Head, Investment Group. Between 1992 and 1997, she served as the Chairperson, Constitution Review Committee of the Money Market Association of Nigeria. Edith joined Nigeria LNG Limited in 1997 as Head Legal (Commercial) and rose to the position of Company Secretary and Legal Adviser in 1998. In 2006, she became the General Counsel/Company Secretary of Nigeria LNG Limited where she manages NLNG’s legal services and secretariat services to the Boards of Directors of NLNG, BGT and NSML. Some of her major achievements include the drafting and negotiation of the Engineering, Procurement & Construction (EPC) contracts for all the NLNG expansion projects and gas sales agreements (GSAS) with the joint venture partners of NNPC.