Home News Cnooc under fire as one employee dies in Kingfisher oil Dev’t accident

Cnooc under fire as one employee dies in Kingfisher oil Dev’t accident


One person reportedly died at the Kikube based Kingfisher oil development area operated by the China National Offshore Oil Company (Cnooc Uganda Ltd) on Friday October 6.

Cnooc Uganda Ltd spokesperson Ms Amina Bukenya who confirmed the accident incident to the Uganda Radio Network (URN) declined to devulge on the details.

Sources at the site told the same news website that one of the employees whose details are yet to be revealed reportedly died.

The development was sparked off by a letter dated October 7, where the executive director of the Petroleum Authority of Uganda (PAU) Ernest Rubondo wrote to the Cnooc Uganda president suspending all the ongoing developments.

In the letter seen by this Website, Mr Rubondo said that all the activities at the site have been stopped until further notice.

“The Petroleum Authority of Uganda has learnt of a fatal incident within the Kingfisher project area that occurred today 6th October 2023. This regrettable incident follows several safety incidents that this authority has previously brought to the attention of CNOOC Uganda Limited (CUL),” the letter reads in part

“This trend is unacceptable as it compromises the safety of the personnel and damages the safety of the sector” it adds.

He further quoted section 177 of the Petroleum (Exploration, Development, and Production) Act 2013, and directed Cnooc to halt operation with the exception of activities required to maintain safety and security.

A zoom meeting was expected today (Sunday) between PAU and Cnooc to discuss the matter.

According to the URN sources at the site indicated to URN that the fatal accident with Kingfisher’s operation area led to the death of one person.

The source indicated that the truck belonged to Excel Company, which was subcontracted by CNOOC Uganda Limited for site clearance, and construction of well pads among others.

The Kingfisher field is being developed by a partnership of oil and gas companies: TotalEnergies E&P, (56.67%), China National Offshore Oil (CNOOC), (28.33%), and Uganda National Oil Company (15%). CNOOC Uganda, a subsidiary of CNOOC, serves as the operator of the field.

CNOOC began drilling works in January this year, almost a year after a Final Investment Decision was taken. Sources at the Ministry of Energy indicated to URN that while the TotalEnergies Tilenga project area has not suffered any fatal accidents, the Kingfisher area has been dogged by a number of incidents.

The source indicated that it appears like CNOOC Uganda Limited has not ensured strict adherence to the safety requirements. Like sectors of the economy, the Oil and Gas Industry in Uganda is required to protect employees against work-related sickness, disease, and injury.

Bukenya also confirned the planned meeting over the matter.

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