By GLADYS JOHNSON
Oranto Petroleum will be financing an educational programme in conjunction with the Ministry of Petroleum, to provide training to 25 teachers in the most under-privileged parts of the country, as part of its commitment to the socio-economic development of South Sudan.
The expected support from Oranto Petroleum will pave the way for 25 teachers to receive quality training that will benefit 60,000 children across 30 villages in Yirol, in South Sudan’s Eastern Lakes State. The program will run for a 5-year period and is expected to have a considerable impact on communities in the State, which is among the poorest of the country.
It will be implemented by Action for Intervention and Management (AIM), a non-governmental organization that works to provide quality education to the most under-developed parts of South Sudan.
Prince Arthur Eze, Executive Chairman of Oranto Petroleum stated that it is the company’s firm belief that supporting teachers in their professional development leads to improved outcomes for learners. “Good quality training is an essential part of a teacher’s professional life and it is going to help so many children.
“In South Sudan and across Africa, too many children have not had the utmost access to an excellent education. I am happy this program will start addressing this issue and closing the gap especially with young girls. Oranto will continue supporting what catalyzes leadership to make educational equity a reality,” added Prince Arthur Eze
Oranto’s support to the programme is in line with the company’s policy to significantly engage local capacities in all its activities in South Sudan and promote the development of social infrastructure. The company already awarded last year a contract for the construction of two primary schools in Yirol and Rumbek, at an estimated cost of over $800,000. The construction of the schools is being executed by local construction company Dynamic Supplies and Construction Limited, in line with Oranto’s commitment to mobilise local human and material resources in all its activities in the Republic of South Sudan.
“The South Sudanese oil industry can never be at its best without qualified citizens to take up roles across the full value chain. Earning a qualification is not enough for teachers to continue to grow, develop and evolve,” declared Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth, Minister of Petroleum of the Republic of South Sudan.
“For South Sudan to reach its true place in Africa, we have to invest in education and great students are the result of great teachers and it is therefore essential to empower and support teaching professionals throughout this country and I am thankful to Oranto Petroleum and implore on other oil companies in the country to do the same,” added the Minister.
Oranto, and its sister company, Atlas Petroleum, comprise Africa’s largest privately held, Africa-focused exploration and production group, with 22 licenses in 11 jurisdictions, including producing assets in Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea. In late May, Oranto agreed to work with Rosneft, Russia’s largest oil producer, on the development of 21 oil assets in 17 African countries.
Oranto acquired Block B3 South Sudan in March 2017 and has since both engaged in unprecedented fast pace exploration activities on the Block and demonstrated significant interest in delivering oil and gas asset development in South Sudan ahead of schedule and in a most cost-effective manner. Oranto completed data acquisition on Block B3 in the second quarter of 2017 and is currently in the data interpretation stage.