TheCapital Investigation: Fresh Facts Emerge on Shebah, Partner Banks Court Case

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TheCapital Investigation: Fresh Facts Emerge on Shebah, Partner Banks Court Case

TheCapital Investigation: Fresh Facts Emerge on Shebah, Partner Banks Court Case
October 17
05:47 2018

Fresh facts about the legal tussle between Shebah Exploration and its creditor banks have emerged after earlier publications about the case have presented facts considered at variance with actual insights of the matter.

Information newly gathered by TheCapital shows that the facts of the matter have been largely mispresented in the media.

According to an authoritave source, it was actually the banks, Afrexim bank, Skye Bank (Now Polaris Bank) and Diamond bank that filed the action in a Lagos High Court, where they registered the judgement of the English Court, which belied any suggestion that the judgement was registered in Nigeria with the knowledge of the defendants.

Shebah Exploration, Allenne Ltd and Dr Orjiako merely filed defensive action against the registration of the summary English Court judgement.

With regards to the insinuation that Shebah had only paid back about $6.1million, evidence filed at a Federal High Court in Lagos shows the company is found to have paid back over $68 million to the creditor banks in principal and interest and is committed to full resolution of the issues of the loan.

The creditor banks had made an attempt to obtain a Mareva injunction (freezing order) and failed as the presiding judge ruled against the creditors application on 25th September,2018.

SEPCOL is a foremost indigenous player in the oil and gas industry in Nigeria, which became the first indigenous company to operate offshore shallow water block with an FPSO, following the acquisition of 40% working interest in OML 108 from ConocoPhillips in 2004.
SEPCOL was doing well until 2014 when it suffered inconclusive workover program due to inadequate funding and collapse of the oil price. Consequently, the creditor banks called the facility on the company, after two and half years tenure.

The default in the facility was further triggered when the lenders declined a $50m repayment offer from a reputable Nigerian bank that offered to join the syndication with additional faculty in the sum of $200m.

Although the creditor lenders made application for the enforcement of the English court judgement, the matter is yet to be determined by the court contrary to the nuances of the publication. SEPCOL, on its part, filed an application to set aside the registered judgement and refuse the enforcement.

The cases will be heard before the Honorable court in due course. All attempts to get the perspectives of the defendants were unsuccessful as they refused to make comments on the matter.

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