A commercial court in London has ordered the release of $200 million to the Nigerian Government as a deposit in the case against Process & Industrial Development (P&ID).
Godwin Emefiele, Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) who confirmed the development on Tuesday, said the ruling followed the establishment of prima facie fraud against P&ID before the court.
“We are also pleased that the Court has rejected P&ID’s application to increase the guarantee, which was clearly intended to be a diversionary tactic and entirely misconceived,” Emefiele said.
He stated that the release which is accumulated into the reserves would further enhance the nation’s management of the exchange rate of its domestic currency, the Naira while ensuring monetary and price stability.
“This is a further and significant victory for Nigeria in our ongoing fight to overturn the US$10 billion award procured through fraud and corruption by P&ID and former government officials.”
The legal battle between the Nigerian Government and P&ID over the failed 2010 gas supply deal to develop a gas-processing plant is coming to a halt.
Nigeria had requested a stay on any asset seizures by the court while the legal challenge was being awaited, but Nigeria was ordered to pay $200 million to the court within 60 days to ensure the stay of judgement.
“P&ID and its backers, Lismore Capital and VR Advisory, are increasingly seeing their case slip between their fingers. They continue to resort to employing delay tactics, disseminating misleading claims, and taking every step to obstruct our investigations across multiple jurisdictions,” Emefiele said.
The court also rejected P&ID’s application to increase the guarantee.
Amos Abba is a journalist with the International Center for Investigative Reporting, ICIR, who believes that courageous investigative reporting is the key to social justice and accountability in the society.