Suspects in $9.6b P&ID deal pleads guilty
The Economic Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Thursday arraigned four persons for their alleged involvement in the Process and Industrial Development Nigeria Limited (P&ID) deal with the Nigerian government.
The suspects, whom the EFCC did not name pleaded guilty to a second count of obtaining land from the Cross River State government with the intent to defraud at the Federal High Court in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.
The prosecutor- EFCC informed the court that there were 11 charges brought against the defendants – P&ID and its agent.
The defendants did not object to the charges to be read to them before the court judge Justice Inyang Ekwo.
EFCC commenced an investigation of the contract following a British court ruling that Nigeria owed the Irish firm about $9 billion for violating terms of the contract.
The contract for gas supply and processing (GSPA) was signed by the administration of late President Umaru Yar’Adua and P&ID.
The 2010 deal between the Process and Industrial Developments Limited (P&ID) company — widely reported to be registered in the British Virgin Islands — and the Nigerian government was meant to be a win-win for both sides.
But P&ID sued the Nigerian government for breaching the agreement by failing to provide the gas — or install promised pipelines to the project site as agreed in the contract.
An arbitration tribunal in London awarded the firm $6.6 billion (5.9 billion euros) in damages in January 2017.
P&ID said the accrued interest of $1.2 million a day had pushed that amount to more than $9 billion — about one-fifth of Nigeria’s declared foreign reserves of $45 billion.
The company was to build gas processing facilities around Calabar, Cross River State, and the government was to supply wet gas up to 400 million standard cubic feet per day.
The agreement defined wet gas as “associated gas removed, during oil production, having a propane content of not less than 3.5 mol per cent and a butane content of not less than 1.8 mol content, compressed and delivered via pipeline to the site.”