The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has revoked five oil mining licences (OML) and one oil prospecting licences (OPL) belonging to five companies.
The revoked licences includes that of Summit Oil International (OPL 206).
Summit Oil is an indigenous Nigerian company owned by the prominent Nigerian family of Late Chief Moshood Abiola
This announcement was contained in a public notice issued on Thursday by the regulatory body.
The notice said oil mining lease (OML) 98 was revoked from Pan Ocean Oil Corporation, OML 120 and 121 from Allied Energy Resources Nigeria Limited, OML 108 from Express Petroleum & Gas Company Limited and OML 110 from Cavendish Petroleum Nigeria Limited.
The notice also said oil prospecting licence (OPL) 206 was revoked from Summit Oil International.
Details of the size or value of the blocks were not immediately available.
The DPR said the revocation was based on a presidential directive to “recover legacy debts” owed by the companies operating the licences.
Summit Oil International Limited is a pioneer oil company that was founded in 1990 by Chief Moshood Abiola to embrace the independent indigenous upstream oil company concept.
The action comes as Nigeria takes a more aggressive approach to collecting taxes and royalties that the country says it is owed. Oil industry sources said Nigeria has also been increasingly vocal about rescinding licences that are not being actively developed.
A spokesman for the president declined to comment. A petroleum ministry spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.