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P&ID $11bn arbitration award reversal triggers House of Reps investigation

Probe Launched into Legal and Service Providers in P&ID Case Following UK Court's Fraud Verdict

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The House of Representatives, in response to the recent reversal of the $11 billion arbitration award in the case between Nigeria and Process and Industrial Development Limited (P&ID), has officially resolved to investigate the legal and service providers involved in the contentious saga.

The investigation stems from a failed gas project that led P&ID to initiate arbitration, resulting in a $11 billion award against Nigeria. The Federal Government appealed this decision, contending that the gas processing contract was obtained through fraudulent means. In a landmark verdict on Monday, the Commercial Courts of England and Wales set aside the $11 billion award against Nigeria.

During Wednesday’s plenary, Kama Nkemkanma, the lawmaker representing Ohaozara/Onicha/Ivo Federal Constituency in Ebonyi State, brought forth a motion titled “Reversal of the $11 billion arbitration award paid against Nigeria: Call for investigation of all legal and other services providers involved in the P & ID deal.”

Presenting the motion, Nkemkanma highlighted the UK court’s affirmation that the award for the gas project was tainted by fraud. He recounted the ongoing legal battle, stating, “Nigeria has been involved in a fight with P&ID since the company accused the Nigerian government of botching a deal by failing to provide gas to them, leading to the ugly situation where the country suffered a $6.6 billion judgment debt in 2017 when the arbitration tribunal ordered the country to pay P&ID with interest to start counting from March 2013.”

Nkemkanma also pointed out the investigation initiated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in 2018, revealing evidence of suspicious bank transfers related to the case. “Again, we are aware that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, in 2018, began investigating P&ID and found evidence of two bank transfers totaling $20,000 made by Dublin-based Industrial Consultants (International) Ltd.—part of the P&ID group of companies—to Grace Taiga, a Nigerian government lawyer, who oversaw the award of the gas plant contract, thus exposing the level of shoddiness and corruption around the entire process,” he stated.

Following its adoption, the motion was subsequently referred to the Committees on Justice and Financial Crimes for further input. As Nigeria navigates the aftermath of the UK court’s decision, the investigation seeks to bring transparency and accountability to the legal and service providers involved in the P&ID case.

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