Sola is a Senior Partner in the Energy and Project Finance practice group of Adepetun Caxton-Martins Agbor & Segun (now Dentons ACAS-Law), which he co-founded in 1991.
In his 39-year career, Sola is renowned in the Nigerian Oil and Gas industry as an expert in oil and gas law and has considerable experience across a wide range of energy focused matters. He represents clients locally and internationally on multi-party transactional matters ranging from corporate structuring and re-structuring, mergers and acquisitions and regulatory compliance with a focus on oil and gas.
Sola is the recipient of a number of accolades, recognizing his excellent leadership quality and thought leadership. In 2016, he received the Lifetime Achievement Award in Africa for his sustained commitment to building the “Cape to Cairo” oil and gas industry. In 2019, he also received the award for Business Lawyer of the Year from the Nigerian Legal Awards. He has been listed in “Band 1” as one of the leading Nigerian Energy and Natural Resources Lawyers in the last 15 (fifteen) editions of the Chambers Global Guide, the World’s Leading Lawyers. He was listed as a ‘ Global Elite Thought Leader’ in the Who’s Who Legal: Global Elite 2019 and 2021 editions. He has been listed in the last 10 (ten) consecutive editions of ‘Euromoney’s Guide to the World’s Leading Energy and Natural Resources Lawyers’ as an expert and leading legal practitioner. Sola has also been described as a “leading lawyer” in the 2019, 2020 and 2021 editions of the ‘IFLR 1000’ directory under the Energy and Infrastructure, Project Development, Project Finance and Tax industry sectors. The ‘Chambers Global Guide’ labels Sola as “the foremost practitioner in upstream processes” in Nigeria, “one of the leaders of the field” and “a standout lawyer for energy work” and records that his clients regard him as “a top-notch lawyer”.
He currently serves in several leadership positions, including as the Chairman of the board of directors of Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria.
Casimir Chinyelu Maduafokwa is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Tecon Oil – Niger Blossom Drilling Group, a high performance and high quality Pan-African Drilling and Work over Rig Units and Oil Tools Contract Services Company with Nigeria as the key operational base, but with ambition and interests in the key Gulf of Guinea countries of Congo Brazzaville, Angola, Gabon and in East Africa.
He is also the promoter of Cepstar7 Reality Holdings, athorough going development company focused on top tier real estate. His new and most important long-term initiative could very well be the foundation for social responsibility, grants and philanthropy, policy think tank and advocacy, the Casimir Maduafokwa Common Cause and Prosperity Foundation (CMCCP Foundation).
A can-do entrepreneur and complex problem solver, a political economist and social critic, researcher and investment banker, Casmir holds a B.Sc. degree in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research from Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York; as well as Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Finance & Mathematical Economics, also from the same Syracuse University.
Casimir became the President/Chief Executive Officer of Tecon Oil Services Limited in 1991 through acquisition, after establishing and managing Cosmocorp Holdings (a company engaged in strategic investment and assets development, notably the idea of Luxury Condominiums in Nigeria).
Prior to this, he started his professional career with the Center for Management & Policy Research, Washington DC where he worked as a Policy Research Analyst in 1979 and was a rising Kempian Austrian-Supply Sider in the early Raegan and early years. He later proceeded to the Atlanta Office of Mathtech Division of Mathematics Inc., Princeton, New Jersey as Econometrician/Operations Research Analyst in 1981 before leaving the United States of America. Between 1983 and 1986, he worked with Chase Merchant Bank, Lagos as Assistant Manager, Credit and Marketing. In 1986 he joined First City Merchant Bank Limited as Manager, Credit and Marketing. He left F.C.M.B. to establish Cosmocorp Holdings in 1989.
An active corporate member of Petroleum Technology Association of Nigeria (PETAN), International Association of Drilling Contractor (IADC), Nigeria.
Born March 31, 1954, ‘Yemi Akisanya attended Kings College Lagos from 1966 to 1972, thereafter obtained an LL. B (Hons), from the University of Lagos, Nigeria in 1976 and, in 1979, an LL.M from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
He was called to the Nigerian Bar in July 1977 as a Solicitor and Advocate of the Supreme Court of Nigeria and was enrolled as a Notary Public in May 2014.
After brief stints between 1979 and 1981 with the firms of Odujinrin and Adefulu, in Lagos and Sullivan and Cromwell, in New York, respectively, he joined the Office of General Counsel of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (“MPNU”), in November 1981, as Counsel.
From 1993 to 1996, he was an International Transactions Counsel, in the Office of General Counsel of Mobil Oil Corporation, E & P Division, in Fairfax, Virginia. He retired (elective voluntary early retirement) from MPNU in March 2002, after twenty-one years plus of service as Counsel, Senior Counsel, Acting General Counsel, and Company Secretary.
While with MPNU, he was involved in every aspect of the business and operations of the upstream oil industry, including its processes, transactions, arrangements, ventures, and agreements. And, until his retirement, he was an in-house resource person on the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”). As such resource person, he advised and provided opinions with respect to compliance with the FCPA in the company’s transactions and external relations.
‘Yemi Akisanya is presently engaged in private law practice as Principal of Adeyemi-Akisanya Associates, a service-oriented boutique firm of Attorneys, Mediators, and Conflict Resolvers. A CEDR Accredited Mediator (CEDR is the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution, UK), he has also, in collaboration with other practitioners in Alternative Dispute Resolution and Conflict Management, established The Dispute Solutions Hub (“TDSH”), – www.thedisputesolutionshub.com. TDSH gives clients optimum access to the best in Mediation and Conflict Resolution and Management services, programmes, advisory, training, and development, including Workplace Mediation, Employee Rights Mediation, Conflict Coaching, Host Community Relations and Negotiations, and Union Negotiations.
He is a member of the Association of International Petroleum Negotiators; Life Fellow, the Nigerian Conservation Foundation; and member, Trustee, and the Honorary Secretary, of the Musical Society of Nigeria, MUSON.
Outside of mediation and law practice, Yemi is an ordained Pastor and Bible Teacher, a classical pianist, and a choir trainer/director. His other loves include reading, philosophy, science fiction, and Christian Apologetics. He is married, with children and grandchildren.
Mavuaye James Orife has a BSC Hons, Geology from the University of Ibadan, School of Petroleum Studies, Oxford 1988, Corporate Planning & Petroleum Economics Course 1986, Exploration Economics 1983, Petroleum Industrial Management Institute 1982.
SOCIETIES, MEMBERSHIP, AFFILIATIONS AND FELLOWSHIP AWARDS
• MEMBER SPE 1973
• MEMBER LAGOS SOCIETY OF GEOLOGISTS AND GEOPHYSICISTS 1974
• SPE CONFERENCE AND PROGRAMME CHAIRMAN 1980 – 1981
• CHAIRMAN SPE NIGERIA COUNCIL 1981 – 1982
• PRESIDENT NAPE 1983 – AS INAUGUARAL PRESIDENT(AFTER RESURECTING THE SOCIETY)
• TREASURER NMGS 1983 – 1985
• VICE PRESIDENT NMGS 1986
• ELECTED FELLOW NMGS 1988
• ELECTED FELLOW NAPE 1992
• SPE DISTINGUISHED SERVICE AWARD 2001
• ELECTED PRESIDENT NMGS 2003
• COMEG REGISTERED (GEM 0047) .
• DIRECTOR – SCHLUMBERGEER NIGERIA LTD 1978 – 1988 AS NNPC REPRESENTATIVE
• CHAIRMAN & CEO – VERSA-TECH NIG LTD JUNE 1990 – TILL NOW
• DIRECTOR – STERLING AND FALCON HOLDINGS LTD – 1992 TO DATE
• DIRECTOR – STARZ MARINE AND ENGINEERING LTD – 1997 TO DATE
• MEMBER AND VICE CHAIRMAN COUNCIL OF MINING ENGINEERS AND GEOSCIENTISTS 2003 – 2005
• EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR – MENCORIT NIGERIA LIMITED – 1990 TO DATE
• DIRECTOR – PRIME ENERGY RESOURCES – MARGINAL FIELD (FARMEE) OPERATOR 2003 – TO DATE
• CHAIRMAN – ACHILLES INFORMATION NIGERIA LIMITED – 2005 TO DATE
• DIRECTOR – INTELS SERVICES – 2005 TO DATE
NAPIMS Jan. 1988 – April, 1990 Group General Manager (As Pioneer Head of NAPIMS)
Initiated, defended and completed strategic plans as directed by the NNPC for the reorganization of JV into NAPIMS.
Review of JV operating agreements, concession, bidding and award procedures, prepared framework for the bidding and execution of the OSO Gas Project, attended all JV operating committee meetings and final budget meeting for programmes.
Defended JV budget to NNPC management.
Supervised JV partners to ensure further investment in property as strategy for management of resources.
General Manager, OSO Condensate Project
For the first time, NNPC was appointed to manage the project of this magnitude with a JV partner as a non-operator to head the planning and implementation of the project of about $1,000,000,000 USD. Based on this foundation, the project was completed below the planned budget.
Facilitated the discussion between Eleme Petrochemical plant and Gas supplier and assisted to negotiate a commercially attractive price for gas supply to the project
Joint Venture Division Oct. 1985 – Dec. 1987 General Manager (Pioneer GM of re-organised Joint Venture Division)
Eastern Zone Port Harcourt Feb. 1985 – Sept. 1985 Branch Manager
Elf, Texaco & NAOC
April 1984 – Feb. 1985
Deputy Manager (Joint Venture)
1982 – March 1984 – Deputy Manager (Head Geology Operations)
In charge of all well site geological activities involving planning logistics, preparing well prognoses and well logging programmes and supervision of well site geologists/operations in NNOC/NNPC direct E & P drilling operations.
July 1974 – July 1976 – Senior Geologist
Withdrawn to NNOC to commence work on NNOC wholly owned activities/operations and holding meetings on the newly acquired NNOC interest in the Joint Venture companies – NAOC, Elf, Ashland, etc.
Sept. 1973 – June 1974
On loan to Ashland Oil as Exploration Geologist/Well site Pet. Engineer to start off their drilling operations in Ossu /Izombe Field Exploration.
Jan. 1973 – Aug. 1973
On secondment to Nigerian Agip Oil Company as Exploration Geologist in PH District Office.
Nigerian National Oil Corporation
(July 1972) – Geologist
Joined NNOC as pioneer staff on 1-7-72
Shell – BP
July 1971 – June 1972
Well site Petroleum Engineering Supervisor • Supervised two drilling and/or workover rig Petroleum Engineers in specific areas where the operations are non-routine such as casing liner-hangers, gravel-pack, gas/fluid lift operations, Eposand-Pack, etc. in addition to running own rig operations.
April 1969 – June 1971
Well site Petroleum Engineer • In charge of a drilling rig as the well site Petroleum Engineer, planning and executing operations relating to mud engineering, ordering of well chemicals, preparing casing programme and running same. Daily drilling progress reports, log interpretation and responsibility for all data acquired on the rig by the company and. reporting to the Operations Engineer in the Head Office .
Funmi Coker has a BSc in Chemical Engineering from Loughborough University and a PhD from the University of Nottingham. He is a Fellow of the Institution of Chemical Engineers in the UK, a Fellow of the Nigerian Society of Chemical Engineers and a Fellow of the Nigerian Academy of Engineers. He started his career working in the technical headquarters of NNPC on refinery projects. He subsequently worked as a Business Development Adviser with Shell International Gas Limited and as the Expansion Co-ordinatior of Nigeria LNG Limited.
He subsequently worked as the Executive Director, Joint Venture Operations of the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) and then as the Managing Director of OKLNG, a joint venture of NNPC, Shell and Chevron established for the development of a LNG and NGLs project in Olokola in Nigeria. Since 2012 he has been an Independent Energy Consultant.
Chief Sena Anthony is at present a Lagos based Oil and Gas Law Consultant and an external director for Oando Plc. She graduated in Law from the University of Lagos in 1973 and she was called to the Bar 1974. She joined the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) in 1978 and worked for the NNPC for thirty one years before she retired as Coordinator (Group Executive Director) Corporate Secretariat and Legal Division/Secretary to the Group Board of NNPC. She was the first female to be appointed to such position in NNPC. She was also director of several subsidiary and investee companies of NNPC eg, Brass LNG Ltd.
Whilst with NNPC she produced numerous legal documentation relating to the development, construction and operation of various oil and gas upstream and downstream projects, as well as some of the agreements for major projects eg Nigeria LNG, the West African Gas Pipeline and Brass LNG projects. She also worked for eight years on the Nigeria LNG Project and the first company secretary and General Manager Legal for Nigeria LNG Limited.
She has chaired a number of Government Committees to produce legislation pertaining to the Petroleum Industry eg Committee on Gas Reform Policy and Committee for legislation for production Sharing Contracts. She was also appointed by the current Minister of Petroleum Resources as a member of the Government Technical Committee for the drafting the Petroleum Industry Bill.
Is the first female and to date, the only female to chair the Section on Energy and Natural Resources Law of the International Bar Association (IBA); and currently an Honorary Life member Council of the IBA; she is the first African to be so appointed.
Is a fellow of the Centre for Energy, Petroleum and Mineral Law Policy, University of Dundee Scotland;
Fellow of the Institute of Directors;
Was Board member of the following:
Association of International Petroleum Negotiators (AIPN)
International Energy Law Institute of the US.
Is member of the following:
National Executive Council – Nigeria Bar Association
Nigerian Body of Benchers and Life Bencher.
Chartered Institute of Arbitrators of the UK
She has attended various international courses and seminars on Oil and Gas Law and Policy including the Oxford University Oil and Gas Policy course for company directors and the Harvard Business School.
Dr. Ibilola Amao is the Principal Consultant of Lonadek Global Services (See: https://www.lonadek.com). Lonadek is a multi-award-winning, women-owned, ISO: 9001: 2015 Engineering Technology and Information Management Company. Lonadek builds capacity, capability and competence of STEM talent to deliver value through the democratization of technology in the Energy, Power, Infrastructure, Manufacturing, Oil and Gas. Since establishment in 1991, Lonadek has trained over 5,000 Engineers and empowered over 100,000 STEM Talent. Lonadek is currently collaborating with Microsoft, LinkedIn and GitHub to digitally empower over 10,000 STEMpreneurs and TECHpreneurs in Africa. We focus on Human Capital Development Initiatives (HCDIs) and Continuing Professional Development (CPD) activities.
Ibilola is a Fellow of the Institute of Directors, Energy Institute (EI) UK, Nigeria Academy of Engineering and Nigerian Society of Engineers. She is an EI International Energy Week Board Member, Member of the panel of judges for the Royal Academy of Engineering UK Africa Prize as well as the EI Annual Awards. Ibilola is a Co-Founder of the Women In Energy Network (WIEN), a council member of WEConnet International, Nigeria and provides Engineering Technology Expertise on boards.
Ibilola is a 2021 WEConnect Rise To The Challenge Engineering Sector Awardee, 2020 C3E International Energy Women of Distinction Awardee, Forbes Rising Star 2019, Vital Voices VV100 Fellow, an International Women Entrepreneurial Challenge (IWEC) Awardee and a 2016 Energy Institute Champion. She mentors STEMpreneurs and TECHpreneurs. As a Vital Voices VV GROW, VV100, GAP 2017 fellow and WeConnect International certified member she is involved in Girls in STEM and Women in Entrepreneurship activities with WimBiz. Ibilola pays it forward for national development and socioeconomic transformation.
Abdulrazaq Isa is a Co-Founder and Chairman/CEO of Waltersmith Petroman Oil Limited an Indigenous Nigerian Independent oil and gas producing company which Operates the Ibigwe field in Oil Mining Lease 16 located in Imo State Nigeria.
Under Abdulrazaq’s leadership, WALTERSMITH commenced commercial export from the field in 2008 and in 2011 participated in the consortium that acquired Shell/Total/Agip 45% interest in OML 34.
With over 30 years professional experience as a Banker and Entrepreneur, Abdulrazaq has interests in Financial services and the oil and gas industry in Nigeria. He is an Alumnus of Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, Nigeria and The Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore.
Abdulrazaq is a member of several professional organisations and he is currently engaged in philanthropic work in support of the development of science education
Dr. Cecilia Aqua-Umoren is an accomplished Legal Practitioner, with over 30 years experience.
She was the principal/founding partner of the law firm Cecilia Okafo& Associates (now Sapphire Partners), a full service corporate and litigation firm, where she gained a wealth of experience in international transactions and local legal practice. The firm represented many foreign companies in a range of matters both legal and commercial and advised them on various areas of law practice including contractual, regulatory and policy issues.
Mrs. Aqua-Umoren is one of the pioneer legal practitioners of telecommunications in Nigeria. She acted as external solicitor to Nigeria Telecommunications Limited (NITEL) and represented NITEL in its first major telecommunications Joint Venture, Mobile Telecommunications System (MTS) where she was eventually appointed Company Secretary. She also served on the Federal Governments’ Ministerial Committee to implement the Open Skies Agreement.
She was part of the group of professionals that set up Emerald Energy Resources Limited, an indigenous Oil and Gas Exploration and Production company where she took up employment in 2001 as a foundation Executive Director after the company was awarded an oil block through open competitive bidding in 2000.
Mrs. Aqua-Umoren has a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) Degree from the University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus, BL from the Nigeria Law School, Lagos and a Masters in Law (LL.M) Degree from Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas, USA. In addition to Emerald Energy Resources Limited, she sits on the Board of Directors of Waltersmith Petroman Oil Limited, Millenium Oil and Gas Limited, Ventures and Trusts Limited and SuperGeeks Limited.
She has attended several executive and managerial courses and she is an alumnus of Havard Business School’s Women’s Leadership Forum. She is involved with several charity organizations and is a Past President of International Women’s Society.
Augustine Ojunekwu Avuru was born on August 17, 1958 in Abbi in what is now Ndokwa West Local Government Area of Delta State. He is chairman of AA Holdings and co-founder as well as pioneer CEO of Platform Petroleum Limited and Seplat Petroleum Development Company Plc.
A state scholar at Orogun Grammar School, he finished in 1975 at the top of his class with Division 1 Aggregate 20. He took a degree in Geology from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka where he graduated in 1980 also at the top of his class with a Second-Class Upper degree and was voted president of the graduating class of 1980.
For his National Youth Service Corps programme, Austin Avuru was posted to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) in August 1980 where he began his oil and gas career as a Well Site Geologist. He distinguished himself early in his career and would emerge Best overall Student at the NNPC comprehensive training class of 1983 at the Petroleum Training Institute (PTI) Warri. He was also Best in Geology, Best in Geophysics and Best in Petroleum Engineering.
Austin Avuru acquired expertise as a Well Site Geologist, Product Seismologist and Reservoir Engineer. By 1987, he was one of NNPC’s pioneer 3-D Seismic interpreters and participant in one of Chevron’s largest 3-D interpretation project in 1987/88.
In 1991, he was the recipient of the NNPC GMD’s Merit Award for what was described, in his citation, as “Exceptional Performance”. Following that honour, Austin Avuru was among a cohort of seven chosen to undergo a Post Graduate Diploma programme at the University of Ibadan in order to convert them to Petroleum Engineers. And once again, Avuru emerged at the top of his PGD class.
Austin Avuru would resign from NNPC to join Mr. Kase Lawal’s nascent venture, Allied Energy Resources, an indigenous deep-water operator in 1992 as Exploration Manager, rising to the position of Deputy COO. Ten years later, Austin Avuru assembled a team of industry professionals to set up Platform Petroleum Limited, a Marginal Field development Company where he was the Pioneer Managing Director/CEO.
In 2007, Platform became the first, among the 24 marginal fields awarded in 2004, to bring her field to production. It remains a well-run oil and gas company till date. Austin Avuru and Dr. ABC Orjiako through their Companies, Platform Petroleum and Shebah Exploration and Production respectively put in a joint bid for OMLs 4, 38 and 41 through an SPV called Seplat. After extensive negotiations, Seplat was assigned the 45% interest held by Shell, Total and Eni for a Cash consideration. The assets were handed over to Seplat as Operator in July 2010. Austin Avuru, as Pioneer CEO, built the Company into a formidable indigenous oil and gas independent and, on 14 April 2014, Seplat was dual listed on the main board of the London Stock Exchange (LSE) and Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), a first for any Nigerian Company.
Mercurial, methodical and meticulous, Austin Avuru, a former president of the Nigerian Association of Petroleum Explorationists (NAPE) is the author of the seminal volume, Politics, Economics & the Nigerian Petroleum Industry, a fellow of the Nigerian Association of Petroleum Explorationists (FNAPE) and 2015 winner of the Ernst & Young West Africa Entrepreneur of the Year. He received an Honourary Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka in 2018.
Avuru served as technical co-ordinator for the review of the oil industry’s memorandum of understanding, was a member of the ministerial committee on the restructuring of the DPR and consultant to the Senate committee on petroleum resources between 2000 and 2003. He also chaired the technical subcommittee that drafted the policy blueprint which subsequently formed the basis of the Nigerian Content Act of 2010.
Austin Avuru, a philanthropist, and alumnus of the Harvard Business School OPM 41, retired from Seplat on July 31, 2020. He now runs his family investment company, AA Holdings Limited and his philanthropy, AA Foundation.