$9.6b judgment: Ex-CJN Belgore may face trial

A former Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Alfa Belgore may face trial for his alleged role in the $9.6billion debt judgment against Nigeria.

Belgore is alleged to have provided legal consultancy service to the Process and Industrial Developments (P&ID) during the case that got it the debt judgement.

He has already been quizzed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on the matter.

Also quizzed is his secretary.

A team of legal giants left Abuja yesterday to hold talks with the nation’s offshore lawyers preparatory to the resumption of the legal battle to reverse the debt judgment on Thursday.

The team left with a three-point agenda: seeking the leave of the court to set aside the $9.6b damages, seeking a stay of execution of the award and appealing the judgement.

Several other people may also be arraigned with Ex-CJN Belgore, The Nation gathered yesterday.

A total of 18 past and present government officials have been linked with the signing of the alleged agreement with P&ID.

However, only one of them, a former Director, Legal Services of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Grace Taiga, has so far been taken to court.

She was arraigned before Justice Olukayode Adeniyi of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory on Friday.

Sources said the EFCC has concluded investigation on more suspects and recommended them for trial.

One source said anyone who is implicated during investigation will face trial.

Another source said: “The case at hand is serious. Many suspects conspired to create this problem for the country. We will arraign more people and companies in court.

“The final outcome of the investigation will determine the fate of ex-CJN Belgore. If he is found guilty, we might put him in the dock with others. The law is no respecter of anybody.”

When contacted, the EFCC’s prosecution lawyer, Mr. Bala Sanga (a former Attorney-General and Commissioner of Justice in Adamawa State), said: “We are going to give it everything to get to the root of this criminal conspiracy.

“We will prosecute anybody found culpable after the conclusion of our investigation.”

The Federal Government, it was also gathered, has perfected plans to register in London last Wednesday’s judgment in Nigeria against Process and Industrial Developments (P&ID) in line with UK’s law on Registration of Foreign Judgment.

If the registration scales through, P&ID will forfeit all its assets in Nigeria and in the UK, including the $9.6billion damages to the Federal Government.

 

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