Oil exploration exercises in Block 14T in Kajiado County which borders Kenya’s capital city Nairobi have been suspended after the county government accused national oil of not involving the local community.
According to Kajiado county government the multi-billion shilling oil exploration exercise at Magadi being carried out by the Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation (Jogmec) is yet to involve locals to discuss modalities and compensation.
The county’s Deputy Governor Paul Ntiati residents feared that the exploration that started 3 months ago could lead to the loss of huge chunks of land in three blocks that fall in four group ranches.
However according to National Oil which acquired the exploration license in 2010 422 million has been set aside to compensate displaced persons in the four blocks and an extra kshs.320,000 to rent four camps.
In February 2013 National Oil invited tenders for the provision of Magnetotelluric (MT) Survey and acquisition of 2D Seismic Data in Block 14T of Kenya to establish the hydrocarbon potential of the block and utilize its outcome to improve basin study related hydrocarbon exploration models of the region.
Since then Japanese investors including the Marubeni Corporation which has offices in Nairobi have shown interest with CEO Hirohisa Miyata indicating the company is eyeing the laying of a pipeline connecting the drilling site to refinery and marketers
Locals in Kajiado County however say they are yet to receive a cent and want considerable compensation if the project is to continue.
National Oil on its part did not confirm the suspension of the exploration despite.