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Why we won’t allow illegal cession of our oil wells, by A-Ibom Govt

By Ise-Oluwa Ige

ABUJA—The Government of Akwa Ibom state has told an Abuja Federal high court sitting in Maitama that it rejected the political solution arranged by former President Olusegun Obasanjo in 2006 which made it concede 162 of its oil wells to Rivers and Cross River states because such political arrangement was  bereft of any known basis in law.

President Yar’Adua had toed the path of constitutionalism and rule of law to return part of the conceded oil wells hijacked  from Akwa Ibom on the ground of political solution.

Already, the National Boundaries Commission with the Revenue Allocation Mobilisation and Fiscal Commission are using that basis to pay Akwa-Ibom the 13% derivation revenue.

But both Cross River and Rivers states were aggrieved by the decision of President Yar’Adua.

They are in court challenging the reversal of the political arrangement by President Obasanjo.

For instance, Rivers state is insisting that former Governor, Obong Victor Attah, was a signatory to the political solution which made it binding on all parties involved.

But lead counsel to Akwa Ibom, Chief Bayo Ojo (SAN) told the court that however beautiful such political arrangement could be, it is not rooted in law.

The argument was contained in the written address prepared by him in the suits instituted by Rivers and Cross River states challenging the return of the disputed oil wells to Akwa Ibom by the administration of President Umaru Yar’Adua.

Akwa Ibom through Ojo (SAN) is also challenging the jurisdiction of the Federal high court to even hear the lawsuits instituted by both Rivers and Cross River.

Ojo is contending that since the dispute brought before the court was between states and between states and the Federal Government, it is only the Supreme Court that has jurisdiction to hear the case.

He said the plaintiffs can only be heard on the instant issue in dispute if it invokes the original jurisdiction of the apex court as provided for by section 230 of the 1999 constitution.


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