Why FG’ll not negotiate with P&ID —Malami
By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
Justice Cranston J. of UK court has ordered Process and Industrial Development, P&ID, to make payment of £1.5 million to cover the legal cost incurred by Nigeria, as part of successful application for extension of time to challenge the arbitration award and procedural hearing earlier in the year.
The judge gave the order, yesterday, as Nigeria appeared for a scheduled hearing. The payment is to be made within 21 days.
The hearing, yesterday, followed the major victory secured by the Federal Government, last Friday, which allowed it to bring a fraud challenge against a $10 billion arbitration award obtained by P&ID well outside the normal time limits.
Yesterday’s hearing was held to decide procedural and cost issues relating to the federal government’s applications to challenge the arbitration award and determine the short term directions to trial.
With this, Nigeria will now proceed to a full trial, while a case management conference to determine the full trial windows would take place after November 2020.
Reacting to the development yesterday, the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN, said in a statement by his spokesman: “This is another crucial win for Nigeria in our ongoing fight against the vulture-fund-backed P&ID.
‘’We are pleased that the English Courts have taken our fraud challenge seriously, and awarded us a substantial interim payment in respect of our successful application for an extension of time to challenge the award.
‘’This is a significant blow for P&ID, which continues to attempt to delay the process. To date, P&ID and its financial backer VR Capital have not produced a single document or credible witness to challenge the FRN’s fraud evidence.
‘’Instead, they continue to resort to disseminating misleading claims, while taking every step possible to delay or obstruct our investigations across multiple jurisdictions.