Ladol Obtains Court Injunction As Jonathan Attempts To Impose Foreign Monopoly On Maritime Sector

FPSO

A Federal High Court, sitting in Lagos has granted injunctions restraining President Goodluck Jonathan and other relevant government agencies from carrying out an order to relocate the $500 million oil project from LADOL Free Trade Zone(FTZ) in Lagos to Agga in Bayelsa State.

Also restrained in the judgment given by the Presiding Justice of the Court, J.T Tsoho on Tuesday May 12, 2015 are the National Assembly, the Federal Ministers of Transport and Justice/Attorney General of the Federation.

Jonathan had directed that all oil and gas related cargoes coming into Nigeria, destined for any facility or Port must
instead be discharged at one of Intels’ facilities at Onne, Warri and Calabar and that LADOL’s privately developed facilities be moved from Lagos to Bayelsa or to an Intels facility until a suitable facility in Bayelsa is built.

According to LADOL’s counsel, Professor Fidelis Oditah QC, SAN who filed the action on behalf of the company, “these injunctions ensure that all related agencies, including the Nigerian Ports Authority, must allow vessels and cargoes to proceed directly to any Port or approved facility of choice, including oil and gas cargoes, protecting the Nigerian indigenous maritime sector. In addition, vessels from foreign waters can berth directly at LADOL Free Zone in line with LADOL’s Designation as a Deep Offshore logistics Base, permitted to receive two International vessels each week.

“The Injunctions further prevent the passing of the amendments to the Oil and Gas Export Free Zones Act which sought, among other changes, to impose a foreign owned monopoly on the movement of oil and gas cargoes in Nigeria and transfer control of 12 Free Zone’s in Nigeria currently under the NEPZA Act to the control of the Oil and Gas Free Zone, which is controlled by the same foreign owned monopoly company,” a statement by LADOL read.

The Injunctions Granted Are As Follows:

1. Injunction restraining the House of Representatives of the National Assembly from considering or passing the amendment of sections 1, 2 and 12(5) of the 1996 Act inserted by sections 2, 3 and 10 of the Oil and Gas Export Free Zone Act (Amendment) Bill 2013 passed by the Senate on 7 May 2015 pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice filed by the Plaintiffs/Applicants in these proceedings.

2. Injunction restraining the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria from assenting to the amendment of sections 1, 2, 12(5) of the 1996 Act inserted by sections 2, 3 and 10 of the Oil and Gas Export Free Zone Act (Amendment) Bill 2013 passed by the Senate on 7 May 2015 pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice filed by the Plaintiffs/Applicants in these proceedings.

3. Injunction restraining the Defendants and each of them and/or agents and/or privies from taking any step to enforce the purported
directive of the President of the Federal of Nigeria contained in the letter from NPA to the Plaintiff dated 27 April 2015 to the effect that all oil and gas related cargoes must be handled at the designated Intels terminals in Onne, Warri and Calabar ports pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice filed by the Plaintiffs/Applicants in these proceedings.

4. Injunction restraining the Defendants and each of them and/or agents and/or privies from taking any step to enforce the purported
directive of the President of the Federal of Nigeria contained in the letter from NPA to the Plaintiff dated 27 April 2015 requiring the Plaintiff to build its fabrication and FPSO integration facility at designated Intels terminals in Onne, Warri or Calabar ports pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice filed by the Plaintiffs/Applicants in these proceedings.

The recent move by the government raises question about its sincerity on the local content act, which encourages the work of companies like LADOL. The indigenous firm had recently gotten out of a legal battle with Samsung Heavy Industries over a contract meant to be executed by the two companies. Samsung and LADOL settled out of court.

The company’s private investors built a green field swamp into a $500 million industrial village in Lagos. An additional $300 million has also been spent on building West Africa’s largest vessel fabrication and integration facility, which is on-course to create 50,000 local jobs.

Comments