Oil Spills in Kibiiro was a minor Geothermal drilling error – Eng. Asiimwe Jonard.


The recent panic of Oil spills and its effect was not serious as some had said, however, what spilled, happened at a point of kibiiro where geothermal drilling was happening with an intent of qualification and quantification of hot springs in the area.

This exercise is monitored by the geothermal department at Directorate of Geological, Geothermal, Survey and Mines under the MEMED.

They were 8 holes in total but one at around 70m intercepted the geological alteration of oil prospects in that region, which was earlier collected in the pond (oil spills) with a target to collect and take it for more testing after the drilling.

Little did the drillers know that the hard layer (a conifer ) has been reached that on forcing the rig, the resulting pressure was too high to control hence forcing even the collected materials to go with drill mad mixed with some oil spill prospects, the area being an oil region!!!. All these are expected incase the drillers did not have enough geological data about the place.

Eng. Asiimwe Jonard in a drilling field.

Advice to the drillers;

Since we all know that this region is both linked to minerals and petroleum ,the drilling system should be well revised that geo -data should be well interpreted to the drillers, because most of the drillers are not geologists, at the same time they use more of mechanical knowledge than geological features and expertise.

Once they take samples at there depth contracted!! there work is done!!.

The ministry of energy should ensure that every company or even there own activities of drilling in Albertine region should be given close supervision as the government has not so far finished to explore all the areas around if they have volumes of oil prospects.

Under this exploration work program of every company intending to do exploration, they always provide the environmental segment in the area to be operated!!. But in most cases this part is neglected since the company’s interests are not yet reached.


If they have already given that block under oil and gas arrangement, even though the mineral policy and petroleum act allows both to exist for as long they fall in different mineral alignment (organic & inorganic) i.e licensing different companies in the same area under an arrangement of exploring different interests E.g geothermal happening in the same place as oil & Gas.

Asiimwe in the field (behind is a drilling derick).

This should not be stoped of course law provides for it but the drilling should be regulated in most high risk areas where we expect and have increased geological confidence over the oil prospects to avoid accidental spillages.

The drill company for usual minerals and geothermal can not control the after reactions of the beneath since the technology employed for oil exploration is quite so sophisticated than this of usual drilling for industrial minerals or Base metals etc.

In conclusion, as Ugandans we are now advancing to another level of Natural resources utilization, l kindly call upon all stake holders to practice professionalism at every level, this is the only way our joint efforts will be felt in this industry yarning to move to next level.