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Nigerian govt withdraws lawsuit against Seplat CEO, Roger Brown, chairman, directors



The Federal Government has withdrawn the lawsuit filed against Seplat Energy, the oil & gas company revealed in a statement on Thursday.

A week ago, Ripples Nigeria reported that the Federal Government sued Seplat Chief Executive Officer, Roger Brown, Chairman, Basil Omiyi, and some top director for conspiracy to breach the Immigration Act 2015.

The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) accused the company of offering Brown, a foreigner, a job without the consent of the comptroller-general of immigration.

Ripples Nigeria gathered that the lawsuit followed the discovery by the Ministry of Interior that Brown was in possession of a Combined Expatriate Residence Permit and Aliens Card (CERPAC), which is not based on a valid Expatriate Quota.

In the statement signed by Seplat Energy’s Chairman, Omiyi, he told shareholders of the company and investors in the capital market that the lawsuit has been discontinued.

Omiyi said the notice of the withdrawal is dated April 6 and was issued by the Director of Legal Services of the immigration service.

“Seplat Energy is pleased to announce that it has become aware of the Notice of Withdrawal/Discontinuance of the legal action that was previously instituted at the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, by the Nigeria Immigration Service (acting for the Federal Government of Nigeria) against the Company and some of its Directors and Officers.

Read also:Seplat’s Roger Brown in immigration mess, as FG goes after chairman, directors over job offer

“The Notice of Withdrawal/Discontinuance of the action dated 6 April 2023, was issued by the Director Legal Services of the Nigeria Immigration Service and stated in part that “the Claimant hereby discontinues all the proceedings in this charge against the above-named Defendants,” the statement reads.

Meanwhile, Brown is still restricted from working in Nigeria, as the Federal Government has seized his visa, working permit and resident permit.

The visa and permits were seized as a result of allegations that Brown is a racist and mistreated Nigerian workers, but favoured expatriates in Seplat.

Seplat denied the allegations, and Omiyi in the statement said Seplat is working to resolve the visa and permit issue.

“The Company continues to engage with the Ministry of Interior to bring closure to the false allegations presented to the Ministry as a result of which the residency status of its Chief Executive Officer was withdrawn.

“The Company also refers to its Announcement of 6 April 2023 confirming that the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos had vacated the ex parte Interim Orders against Seplat, its CEO and its Board Chairman, including the orders that restrained the Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Roger Brown from participating in the running of the Company,” Omiyi said.

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