Apart from the legal battle Nigeria has been fighting in the United Kingdom, UK, to quash the $9.6 billion awarded against it for breaching a gas agreement with Process and Industrial Developments, P&ID, it may face 11 other such litigation any moment from now.
About 11 agreements signed with different firms have been breached and they are waiting for the outcome of the litigation with P&ID to determine whether to proceed to lay claims or not, it was learned on Tuesday.
According to The Nation, some of the 11 companies were alleged to have initiated arbitration process against the government of Nigerian.
However, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, has written to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, to assist in probing how the 11 deals are tied to the ill-fated contracts with P&ID.
Acting on the letter, EFCC raised a team of detectives to probe the deals.
It was learnt that the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources on January 10, 2010 entered into separate agreements with P&ID and 12 other pre-qualified investors for gas production facilities at the nation’s oil fields.
“Nigeria is in a serious danger because 11 other firms have issues with the Federal Government on the gas projects.
“The Ministry of Petroleum Resources actually on January 10, 2010 entered into a deal with P&ID and 12 other pre-qualified investors for accelerated development of gas production facilities at the nation’s oil fields.
“These oil fields included those on offshore, land swamp in different flare points. Both the government and the investors have their obligations spelt out in the MoU. And the two parties have defaulted with the P&ID and 11 companies seeking compensation or payment of damages.
According to another source, “Some of these firms have initiated arbitration process. A few others are awaiting the outcome of Nigeria’s case at the UK Court of Appeal to make a stronger case for payment of damages.
“The concern of those in NNPC and other government officials is about how much Nigeria will now pay for the botched Gas Supply and Processing Agreement, GSPA. This is why the government is ready to give P&ID a good fight in the UK and in the United States,” The Nation quoted an anonymous source as saying.
A team of special detectives was said to be handling the investigation of the deals with the 11 firms.
“Our detectives are already investigating the deals with the firms. We have shortlisted about 25 persons to interact with.
“We also discovered that the deals are inter-related with the ongoing case of P&ID. We will leave no stone unturned to end this type of challenge the nation is facing,” a source in the anti-graft agency disclosed.
Also, the Federal Government has invoked Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty(MLAT) to extradite a co-owner of P&ID, Brendan Cahill and Adam Quinn, the son of owner of the Irish firm, the late Michael Quinn.
A ranking government official, who pleaded not to be named, said: “We have already invoked MLAT between Nigeria and the UK and Ireland to bring the two key officials of P&ID to trial in Nigeria.
“We have filed charges against a former Director, Legal Services in the Ministry of Petroleum Resources and they have been implicated Cahill.
“We are hopeful that the extradition move will succeed.”