Home News Ijaw leaders pray court to void marginal oilfields licences

Ijaw leaders pray court to void marginal oilfields licences

by Business News Report

SOME Ijaw leaders have urged the Federal High Court sitting in Yenagoa to cancel the June 29 marginal oil field licences granted by the Federal Government, saying they were issued in breach of a restraining order of the court. Counsel to the Ijaw leaders, Mr Enie Otrofanowei, Thursday, told the court that the Ministry of Petroleum Resources flouted an April 5 injunctive order by granting the licences that they were restrained from granting by the court. “We are seeking to invalidate or set aside the licences and we seek a short adjournment since the defendants are absent today, to argue our application,” he said. The presiding judge, Justice Isa Dashen had on April 5 restrained the Federal Government from issuing licences for marginal oilfields in the Niger Delta pending determination of a pending suit by Ijaw leaders.

The Ijaw leaders, Chief Brown Agu (Opu Agu VIII), Mrs Rosemary John-Oduone, President Ijaw Women Connect and Mr Femowei Friday on behalf of themselves and the Ijaw ethnic nationality had sometime in 2020 approached the court seeking to halt licensing of marginal oilfields located in their domains. But following setbacks and delays suffered by the suit marked No.PHC/YEN/CS/81/2020 the bid winners were announced on June 1, 2021. The presiding judge, Justice Isa Dashen however adjourned til Oct 5 for continuation of hearing and ordered that hearing notices be issued to all defendants who were absent in court. Justice Dashen, it would recalled, inherited the case from Justice Abimbola Awogboro following her transfer to the Lagos Division of the Federal High Court. The defendants in the suit include, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, the Minister of Petroleum Resources and the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources.

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