The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has said the Federal Government was already perfecting legal instruments to enable it to take over all assets of the Process and Industrial Developments Limited in the country.
Mohammed stated this when he led agencies under his ministry’s supervision to defend their 2020 budgets before the Senate Committee on Information and National Orientation.
He said the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, was working towards achieving total confiscation of all P&ID assets in Nigeria.
He said, “I am aware that the AGF is also working on registering the judgment in which the Nigerian court ordered the winding up of P&ID Nigeria.
“The important thing about it that when this judgment is registered, it means that whatever belongs to P&ID now belongs the property of Nigeria. I am also aware that we are also working on instituting an action to set aside the entire award of $9.6bn on the grounds that the award did not take into cognisance the fraud involved in the entire process.
“Some of these problems have just been brought to our notice, and we are actually working on them. The Ministry of Justice is going to institute another separate suit in London to ask the UK court to set aside the entire $9.6bn judgment.
“I am also aware that efforts are being made to prosecute those Nigerians who have been found to be complicit or compromise their position for the P&ID to exploit us.
“Investigation is still going on to apprehend whoever is involved in the entire scandal.”
He said the P&ID had said it would seize Nigeria’s assets in the United Kingdom to enforce the order of a British court against Nigeria.
He said, “To the best of my knowledge, the Ministry of Justice, the Central Bank of Nigeria and the EFCC are also working very hard on the P&ID matter.
“As you are aware, we succeeded in getting a stay of execution and leave of the court to appear the judgment.
“Right now we are appealing the $200m customary payment that we were asked to pay as a condition for stay for execution.”
On plans to provide revenue for budget implementation, the minister said Nigeria had obligations and also had constraints of funding.
He said, “When we came in, oil price dropped to $35 while our production also dropped.
“The benchmark for crude in the budget is low, so it is not about rhetorics, it is about that we are really facing challenges.”