Michael Aondoakaa, a former Attorney-General of the Federation, has urged the Federal Government to initiate legal proceedings against Process and Industrial Development Limited (P&ID), the company’s personnel and the Nigerians who facilitated and signed a gas agreement which has put Nigeria in a liability.
Aondoakaa said this during an interview with Sunrise Daily on Channels Television on Monday in reaction to the $9.6 billion damages awarded against Nigeria.
A London court had on August 16, ruled in favour of the P&ID, an Irish company, to seize assets of Nigeria to the tune of $9 billion.
The order was issued after the company had filed a case against the Nigerian government, with the former accusing the latter of reneging on a 20-year Gas and Supply Processing Agreement (GSPA) signed in 2010.
However, Aondoakaa, the AGF under the late president Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, stated that the agreement was faulty from inception as the deal was not brought before or approved by the Federal Executive Council in 2010.
He also insisted that the agreement was not tendered before the Infrastructural Regulatory Commission Act and Public Procurement Act.
He also argued that the president has no power to approve contracts without FEC approval, claiming that the agreement was drawn up illegally and in secret.
Aondoakaa, therefore, urged the Federal Government to file corruption charges against the company and the Nigerians involved.
He said: “Everyone involved must face the law including the foreigner. You cannot do this in the United States.
“This happened in secrecy. I contacted the DG of the Infrastructural Regulatory Commission and he was also shocked. Everything that is coming to us now is shocking. Ignorance of law is no excuse. If you are a foreign country coming to Nigeria, you ought to know the law. You ought to know if the contract was appropriated in the budget.
“The President doesn’t have the power to give even anticipatory approval.”
The ex-AGF also advised the Federal Government not to negotiate with P&ID over the damages as any settlement reached would endorse the agreement, which he described as fraudulent.
“If you are alluding to fraud, you cannot negotiate at the same time with them,” the former AGF said.
“Fraud can vitiate a valid contract,” he said.