P&ID $9.6bn debt: FG secures variation of UK court order on $200m
By Godwin Tsa
30 November 2019
The Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice (AGF), Abubakar Malami (SAN) has announced that the Federal Government has succeeded in securing variation of the UK court order from cash payment of $200m security to issuing bank guarantee of the same amount. This was contained in a statement issued by his spokesman, Umar Jibrilu Gwandu on Friday. Malami explained that the Federal Government appealed against the payment of $200m security component which was a condition for stay of execution of the judgment. The court on Thursday, November 28, granted the Federal Government’s request for variation of terms of the order seeking to provide bank guarantee in place of direct deposit.
“Our application for variation of the order was allowed and we are as a result not making cash deposit but posting a bank guarantee,” the Minister has said. We remain in control of our funds by the act of acceptance of the guarantee. The government is not paying the $ 200m cash but positing a bank guarantee by the variation of the order. The advantage of the variation in the judgment from direct deposition of cash to posting of bank guarantee is that the money and its control resides in the Federal Government unlike when otherwise. The success recorded so far in relation to the $200m security deposit is that the amount of money remains in our custody, and we are simply providing a document. It is only when our case did not succeed, which we never anticipate, then the court can order the withdrawal of the amount as stated in bank guarantee”.
Malami said the Federal Government requested a change in the method of paying the security deposit because it believes that the entire contract will be quashed on the basis of fraud.
The Minister reiterated commitment to vigorously pursue the case aiming at seeking to set aside the award of $9.6b and get the entire contract quashed.