Court adjourns hearing on Malabu oil deal
Hearing on various applications over the rightful ownership of the Oil Prospecting License (OPL) 245 was stalled yesterday at the Federal High Court following inability to serve counsel to Malabu Oil with notice.
Counsel to Mohammed Abacha, son of former military head of state, Sani Abacha, had prayed the court for an adjournment to allow for service of hearing notice on the first, second, third, sixth and seventh defendants.
Abacha had approached the court, asking it to stop the sale of a $13.5 billion deep water project located in the controversial oil block.
The counsel, Reuben Atabo, who noted that several adjournments had been granted on the matter however prayed the indulgence of the court for a further postponement of the case on the ground that other defendants might not have been informed of the December 4 date for hearing of respondents briefs.
The case was consequently adjourned till February 13, 2018 for hearing of respondent briefs.
The OPL 245 regarded as one of Africa’s richest oil blocks with an estimated 9 billion barrels of crude was controversially awarded to Malabu in 1998 by the then petroleum minister, Dan Etete.
The block was controversially sold to some oil giants in 2011 with $1.1billion allegedly paid to original owners ending up in private pockets.
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