Akwa Ibom State Government on Tuesday declared as null and void President Muhammadu Buhari’s approval of the sale of Mobil’s onshore assets to indigenous oil firm, Seplat.
The announcement had generated much furore, with the state government becoming the latest to declare it as an abuse of due process.
A statement by the Akwa Ibom State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Uko Essien Udom (SAN), reads: “CAVEAT EMPTOR
“Our attention has been drawn to a publication by Femi Adesina, Special Adviser to the President (Media and Publicity), to the effect that President Muhammadu Buhari, in his capacity as Minister of Petroleum Resources has consented to the acquisition of shallow water assets of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited by Seplat Energy.
“This is to inform the general public that this proposed transaction is subject to restraining orders of injunction of the High Court of Akwa Ibom State, sitting in Uyo in Suits No. HEK/56/2018, ATTORNEY GENERAL OF AKWA IBOM STATE V. MOBIL PRODUCING NIGERIA UNLIMITED and HU/209/2020, MOBIL PRODUCING NIGERIA UNLIMITED V. GOVERNOR OF AKWA IBOM STATE & 3 OTHERS. Exxonmobil, Seplat Energy, NNPC Ltd and the Federal Government of Nigeria, all have actual knowledge of the court orders, having been duly served with the orders and/or various newspaper publications of same.
“This executive interference with the judicial process of a court of competent jurisdiction is sad and ill-advised, and is contemptuous of the High Court of Akwa Ibom State. The State urges the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission to take the above facts into consideration as it considers its position in this matter.
“TAKE NOTICE THEREFORE that anyone who deals with the shares or assets of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited during the subsistence of the said orders and in the pendency of the above suits does so at their own risk. Let the buyer beware.”