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Uju Ifejika

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Uju Ifejika
Chairperson/CEO, Brittania-U Nigeria Limited (BUNL)
Speakers 2021

Biography

When corporate discussions of women who have broken the glass ceiling in the rare fields of the global Oil and Gas Industry, Mrs. Uju Ifejika comes to mind. A lawyer and legal expert in the Nigerian and global oil sub-sector, this exceptional and ethical leader broke the glass ceiling by becoming, so far, the first and only woman to own and operate as the Chairman and C.E.O. of a global cutting edge upstream E & P company not only in Nigeria, or West Africa, but around the world..  

A graduate of Ahmadu Bello University - Zaria, were Mrs. Catherine obtained a Diploma in Law in 1982 and an LLB (Hons.) in 1985 and was promptly called to the Nigerian Bar in 1986. She is a member of the Nigerian Bar Association and The International Bar Association, a fellow of the Institute of Arbitration and Conciliation, as well as a member of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators.

Her career in the Petroleum Industry started when she was admitted into Texaco Nigeria Plc to serve her National Youth Service Corp (NYSC) from 1986-87. Thereafter she was retained at Texaco's Legal Department as Junior Counsel. She rose to become Senior Counsel in 1989 and Acting General Counsel from 1991 to 1993. She became Company Secretary/ Public & Government Affairs Manager in 1997 (the first and only person to hold three key position in one). In 2001, when Chevron Inc. and Texaco Inc. merged to become one entity, her Government and Public Affairs responsibilities were extended to cover Nigeria, Cameroon, Togo, Benin, Cote D'Ivoire, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. These positions she held till her departure from Chevron Nigeria Plc.

In 2007, she elected to take a voluntary early retirement after a career spanning over 21 years. In October of the same year, she joined Brittania-U Nigeria Limited as Chairman/CEO and has since steered the indigenous Oil and Gas Company to its current market leading position. Formerly on the Board of Directors of the Federal Ministry of Arts and Culture (2001-2002), Catherine's leadership of Brittania-U has brought a number significant 'firsts'. Under the leadership of Mrs Ifejika. She is the first female owner and operator of an indigenous Oil and Gas Company. Brittania-U in 2001 bided for Marginal field, and was announced as the win of AJAPA fiels in (OML 90) and in 2004 the farm out Agreement was executed between NNPC/CEVRON/BRITTANIA-U, which gave Briittania-U 100% in Ajapa Field. In 2008, under her leadership the Company commenced its first drilling phase which saw the Company drilling two developmental wells, one was successful, while the other was a dry hole, while the second one was successful. 

With the successful well, the Company commence the fabrication of an early Production facility. R and became the first indigenous Company to Construct BrIttania-U 1 Floating Production Storage Unit, (FPSU) in Houma Louisiana USA, which is 100% owned and operated by the company, (The Construction took 71/2 months from start to finish. The Company built own its wellhead platform and produced its first oil from drilling to oil production in 17 months; a feat yet to be equaled by any other company of its kind in Nigeria. She has set up six subsidiary companies in twelve (13) years. In addition, she has received numerous awards for good governance and management in Nigeria, Ghana, Turkey, USA, UAE and Europe, to mention but a few.

Mrs. Ifejika has been recognized for her various achievements in the energy sector and in different organizations.  In recognition of her sterling leadership/managerial achievements, she has been recognized and won many local and international accolades, some of which are:

1.   The Nigerian Trailblazers Award        

2.   US Commercial Services Int'l Partner Award — USA Consulate, Nigeria – 2012

3.           African Female Energy Leaders of the Year Award in the United - Kingdom by the 
              Center for Economic & Leadership Development-2012

4.   Montage African Woman of Excellence Award – 2013

5.   WORLDCOB'S The BIZZ 2013

6.   The European Award for Best Practices - Dec. 2013

7.   2013 Global Women Leaders Hall of Fame - By Centre for Economic & Leadership 
               Development - Dec. 2013

8.   2014 Global Partners Award by the 130th General Assembly Ohio, USA - October 2nd. 2014

9.   Global Business Leader Ambassador — (Nigeria-USA Chamber of Commerce) Aug.2015

10. Patron's Award by Committee of Friends for Humanity - November. 2017

She is married to Mr. Emmanuel Ifejika - Managing Director of Demac-E Nigeria Limited and they have six children (three biological- Two Boys and a girl) and (three adopted-Two boys and a girl).

Appearances

4:00pm - 5:00pm
Session

Women continue to be the most affected by lack of access to energy and are under-represented in energy value chains.