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$9.6bn judgement: Group condemns plans by ‘hired groups’ to blackmail Malami

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A civil society group, Guidance of Democracy and Development, Transparency and Accountability Initiative Against Corruption, along with five other civil society groups, have condemned plans by “hired unpatriotic civil society groups” to blackmail the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), over the $9.6 billion P&ID judgement by the UK court.

The group emphasised that it was mischievous to accuse Malami of sabotaging federal government’s effort, adding that he was not there when the said contract between the federal government of Nigeria and Processes and Industrial Development Ltd was entered into in January, 2010.

According to the group, the intentions of these hired civil society groups is to distract the Attorney General of the Federation, while frustrating the efforts of the federal government to amicably arrive at a more plausible solution to create a soft landing for Nigeria.

The group stated: “As a Civil Society Group deeply concerned about entrenching transparency and accountable leadership in the quest for economic growth and democratic stability, we have keenly followed the trajectory of events pertaining to the gas processing contract entered into between the Federal Government of Nigeria and Process and Industrial Developments Ltd (P&ID), from it’s conception stage to this point where judgement has been passed. In all of these stages the matters that unfolded have been factually clear for any discerning mind to know the origins and processes of the contract.

“Irrespective of the glaring facts about the said contract and subsequent judgement, we have got wind of a bluntly determined attempt by hired unpatriotic civil society groups to blackmail the person of the Attorney General of the Federation, Mr. Abubakar Malami SAN, just in a bid to pass the buck and pave way for the hasty implementation of the $9.6 billion Judgement premised on a sham lawsuit filed at a Court in the United Kingdom.

“For clear emphasis and proper records, it should be stated ab initio that the said contract between the Federal Government of Nigeria and Processes and Industrial Development Ltd was entered into in January, 2010, when Mr. Michael Quinn of P & ID and Mr. Rilwanu Lukman, the then Minister of Petroleum Resources, signed the Gas Sales and Purchase Agreement (GSPA) on behalf of P&ID and the Nigerian government respectively.

“Furthermore, a cursory check will reveal that several other parties were integrated into the contract with clearly defined roles, and to the extent that their roles could affect the outcome of the contract.

“It is no hidden fact that some of these sub-parties to the contract pulled out on the course of time, leading to the failure of the said contract.

“Following the failure of the contract, in 2014 P&ID filed a suit against the Federal Government at the Arbitration Tribunal in the United Kingdom. It should be stated in clear terms that Abubakar Malami was not the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, neither did he have any role to play in the said contract. It is therefore mischievous to accuse Mr. Malami of sabotaging the Federal Government’s effort, whereas he was not there.

“Our findings reveal that the intentions of these civil society groups is to distract the Honorable Attorney General of the Federation while frustrating the efforts of the Federal Government to amicably arrive at a more plausible solution which will create a soft landing for Nigeria.

“P&ID has therefore engaged these mischievous civil society groups to serve as smokescreen in fighting the Attorney General of the Federation. Available records show that the trump card of P&ID has been to consistently dig up mud and smear the image of any individual occupying the Office of Attorney General of the Federation.

“We therefore use this medium to discountenance these civil society groups before they embark on their binge of mischief against the Nigerian State. We herein sound the alarm that they are not just intent on coming for the head of Malami, but are determined to grab Nigeria by the jugular so long as this case and the fairy Judgement of $9.6 billion is concerned.”

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