Oil Search managing director (MD) Keiran Wulff has resigned, following a long-term medical condition that has recently deteriorated.
Chairman Rick Lee said the board entered into discussion with Wulff following concerns and complaints about his behaviour.
Lee said the board considered that Wulff has behaved in a manner inconsistent with the standards expected by the Board in relation to his management style.
He added that the board acknowledges the magnitude of the tasks undertaken by Wulff since his appointment as managing director in February 2020 and recognises the challenges that his recent health issues have had on him.
“This period has been marked by extreme challenges including global lockdowns associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, a plunge in oil prices, crisis measures to protect the Company’s financial position and developing a clear strategy to steer a path to a sustainable future through the energy transition,” he said.
“It is a tribute to all staff that Oil Search is now in a solid position with record levels of production in PNG, a strengthened balance sheet and our Alaskan development plans meeting milestone targets.”
Wulff thanked all all Oil Search staff for their efforts, particularly since the pandemic began, as the company put in place strategies to safeguard its operations in PNG and Alaska.
“It has been a great privilege to work at Oil Search and I believe the company is very well-positioned for the future. It has however, become apparent to me that due to my health challenges, it is becoming increasingly difficult for me to perform at the level required of the position. After considerable reflection and consultation with my family and others including my medical advisers, it is an appropriate time to leave to focus on my health,” he said.
Peter Fredricson, a veteran energy sector executive who joined the company earlier this year as chief financial officer, has agreed to become acting CEO with immediate effect.
A search for a permanent managing director/CEO including interviews with internal and external candidates will begin shortly.
“I look forward to working with the highly experienced Oil Search leadership team, each of whom understands the role they have in executing the Company’s strategic priorities which will ensure we keep delivering results for our shareholders and the broader communities in which we work,” Fredricson said.
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