Malabu Oil: Court Vacates Forfeiture Order On OPL 245
A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has set aside its orders made on
January 26, 2017 for a temporary forfeiture of Oil Prospecting License (OPL) 245, to the Federal Government pending the conclusion of investigations by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Ruling on an application filed by the EFCC, Justice John Tsoho, upheld the application filed by Nigerian Agip Oil Exploration and Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company Limited, challenging the order of forfeiture.
Justice Tsoho held that the orders for forfeiture was initially made, based on the ex-parte application filed by the EFCC which was irregularly filed.
The judge also dismissed an application filed by Malabu Oil and Gas Limited seeking to, among others, stay the earlier reserved ruling on the applications by Agip and Shell.
Malabu oil and Gas Limited had sought to stay the delivery of the ruling to enable it be involved in the case, because it would be affected by the court’s decision in the applications by Agip and Shell.
Justice Tsoho further ruled that the application by Malabu was misdirected and constituted an abuse of court’s process.
He, therefore directed parties who have issues with the Malabu deal – OPL 245, to file fresh cases to ventilate their grievances.