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Nigerian governors appeal $418m Paris Club refund judgment

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All the 36 governors in Nigeria have jointly appealed a judgement by the Federal High Court in Abuja, dismissing their suit challenging a planned deduction of $418 million from the federation account meant to settle the debts owed to consultants engaged by state and local governments on the Paris Club refunds.

The Federal court had, on March 25, ruled against the suit which was filed by the Attorneys-General of the 36 states on the grounds that the governors were not signatories to the suit.

The judge of the court, Justice Inyang Ekwo, while dismissing the suit against the federal government, had said the Attorneys-General did not show enough evidence to accord them the right to institute the action as there was no express evidence to show that the governors of the 36 states consented to the filing of the suit.

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The governors, in a statement on Wednesday signed by five Senior Advocates of Nigeria, S. I. Ameh, J. S. Okutepa, Garba Tetengi, Ahmed Raji and Olumuyiwa Akinboro, advised the public and financial institutions in Nigeria and abroad to desist from dealing with the defendants in the suit as it was subjudice doing so.

“With respect to promissory notes issued to them and intended to be discounted and given value from funds due to the states of the federation from the federation account, be it known that any person or persons who take steps in respect of the promissory notes in the face of the pending appeal do so at his or her peril,” the statement said.

According to the statement, “the public is advised not to deal with Chris Asoluka (doing business under the name and style of NIPAL Consulting Network, Linas International Limited, Joe Odey Agi, (Practising under the name and style of Joe Agi, SAN & Associates).

“Others include Riok Nigeria Limited, Prince Nicholas Ukachukwu, Ted Iseghohi Edwards, Panix Alert Security Systems Limited, George Uboh, Ned Munir Nwoko Orji Orizu and Olaitan Bello,” the statement said.

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