S/Court affirms FG’s position in revoking allocation of OPLs 321, 323


The Supreme Court has ruled in favour of the Federal Government over voiding the allocation of Oil Prospecting Licences (OPLs) 321 and 323 to Korea National Oil Corporation (KNOC) and re-awarding the oil blocks to ONGC/Owel Petroleum Consortium, Daily Trust reports.

In a four-to-one verdict, the apex court declared that the action of the president, which was taken in 2009, was within his executive powers. It said the act, which arose from a contractual arrangement between the parties, not being a quasi-judicial act, was therefore not subject to judicial review in respect of which a writ of certiorari lies. The apex court consequently affirmed the decision of the Court of Appeal striking out the appellant’s suit at the trial court.

The Koreans protested the decision of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria through a letter by the Energy Minister dated 8th January, 2009, which voided their licences to the blocs and restored the rights of ONGC/Owel Petroleum Consortium as the original winners of the two blocks in the 2005 bid round.