Group commends FG on P&ID $11-billion ruling, asks Govt to honour Magu

By Samuel Ogunsona

The Federal Government has been commended for its victory at the London Court following the P&D ruling which saved Nigeria from paying a whopping $11b debt.

African leading anti corruption group, Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA Resource Centre), in a statement made available to Irohinoodua described the ruling as a significant victory for Nigeria.

The group also called for a National Honour for EFCC former Chairman, Ibrahim Magu whose tenure witnessed diligent probe of the P&D scam.

The statement signed by its Chairman, Olanrewaju Suraju, described the victory as a vindication of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC) campaign against corruption.

He said the ruling further halted the exploitation of African countries by international briefcase companies and citizens.

“We at HEDA Resource Centre want to fervently applaud the Nigerian government’s unwavering commitment to pursuing justice and safeguarding the interests of its people. The outcome in London legal action serves as a testament to the tireless efforts invested in protecting Nigeria’s financial stability and international reputation by the EFCC, particularly under the Chairmanship of its former Chairman, Ibrahim Magu.”

Suraj said the victory underscores the resilience of some committed Nigerians and institutions in the face of adversity and sets a precedent for holding accountable those who seek to take advantage of African resources, system and corrupt public officials.” Suraju added.

He said without the victory, Nigeria would have been compell3d to pay $11 billion equivalent to approximately one-third of its foreign exchange reserves, to Process & Industrial Developments (P&ID), a shelf company domiciled in the British Virgin Islands.

This is at a time of financial meltdown for the country.

Nigeria promptly contested this demand, asserting that P&ID had engaged in corrupt practices by bribing senior officials to secure the contract and had further compromised the country’s legal representation to access confidential documents during the arbitration process. In response, P&ID vehemently denied these allegations and instead accused Nigeria of systemic incompetence.

In a groundbreaking judgment, Judge Robin Knowles of the London’s High Court uncovered evidence of bribery involving a Nigerian oil ministry official in connection with the gas contract signed in 2010. P&ID had failed to disclose this corrupt practice during the arbitration proceedings.

Judge Knowles expressed his stern disapproval of the actions of certain individuals driven by greed, who were willing to employ corruption without concern for the harm it would cause to others.

Suraju also maintained that the EFCC should sustain its prosecution of all those Nigerians, public officials, and private professionals, in cahoots with P&ID in the criminal conspiracy against the interest of the country for not only financial crimes but also economic sabotage. For leading the torturous and successful fight, in the face of local and international pressure, the former Chairman of EFCC, Ibrahim Magu should be awarded a national honour by President Bola Tinubu.

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