Friday, 30 November 2012

Court Dismisses $12.5bn Gulf Oil Windfall Suit

A Federal High Court in Abuja has dismissed a suit seeking to expose how the  $12.5 billion gulf war oil windfall that accrued to Nigeria under the leadership of retired General Ibrahim Babangida in 1990 was spent.
Justice Gabriel Kolawole said the applicants had no locus standi to institute the action and that they failed to establish by admissible evidence that they were entitled to a hearing.
Six civil society groups had sued the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) asking that the accrued revenue be accounted for.
The groups are the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), Women Advocates and Documentation Centre, Committee for Defence of Human Rights, Access to Justice, Human and Environmental Development Agenda and Partnership for Justice.
The applicants, through their counsel, Femi Falana (SAN), had asked the court to make an order of mandamus compelling the AGF and CBN to publish a detailed statement of accounts showing how the money was spent between 1988 and 1994.
After several adjournments, Justice Kolawole finally delivered the much-awaited judgment.
In dismissing the suit, Justice Kolawole held that the suit was statute barred because it was not filed within the statutory twelve months period after the Okigbo panel report was produced and submitted.

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