Nigerian Govt Denied Me Documents, Witnesses To Fight P&ID In Court – Shasore

Shasore, a former President of Lagos Court of Arbitration, has been accused of having compromised and worked against the interest of Nigeria while the case was in arbitration.

Olasupo Shasore is a former attorney general of Lagos State / Photo credit: The News
Olasupo Shasore is a former attorney general of Lagos State / Photo credit: The News

A former attorney general of Lagos State, Olasupo Shasore, who was legal counsel representing the Nigerian government at a court of arbitration in the United Kingdom in a case filed by P&ID, has defended his actions.

P&ID won the arbitration case against Nigeria and was awarded about $9.6bn damages.

Nigeria only recently, on September 4, 2020 got a UK court to suspend the judgement.

Shasore, a former President of Lagos Court of Arbitration, has been accused of having compromised and worked against the interest of Nigeria while the case was in arbitration.

READ ALSO: UK Court Suspends $10bn P&ID Judgement Against Nigeria

Shasore in statement on Saturday who said he only represented Nigeria during the determine liability, insisted the government he represented did not cooperate with him, failed to provide documents and witnesses in the case, yet he defended Nigeria and secured results.

He said, “I am relieved that the corrupt and fraudulent foundation of this case is affirmed in the recent ruling, though I am disappointed that part of the case made for that result was a case against me based on demonstrably false statements, unfounded innuendoes and spiteful personal attacks on my professional conduct and reputation.

“I was instructed in this matter and accepted the instructions on behalf of my firm and to the knowledge of my partners in late 2012 and I made every effort to defend and vindicate my client at every stage with very few tools and with minimal support from within the government itself.”

Shasore said, “I represented Nigeria up until the liability stage in the arbitration. I did not represent Nigeria in the damages stage of the arbitration. Which means I was not involved when the huge sum of damages was awarded against Nigeria.

READ ALSO: P&ID: Presidency Welcomes UK Judgment, Vows To Protect Nigeria’s Assets From Criminals

“The complete records will show the series of steps that I took to defend Nigeria and the several results, which I secured in that effort at various stages.”

He said none of these was consistent with the unfounded allegations that I failed to present the best available defense.

“With very little or no cooperation from relevant government officials at the time, I filed a jurisdiction objection that potentially could and should indeed have terminated the case in favour of Nigeria because it was clear to us from the beginning that the contract was a scheme against Nigeria,” he said.

He said, “When the then Nigerian officials failed to supply documents or any witness to defend their case, I fought liability by enlisting the support of the legal adviser of NNPC who gave evidence to the best of his knowledge when everyone else with knowledge, refused to do so.

“I instructed the UK firm of Stephenson Harwood a respected international arbitration team and a leading Barrister to attempt to set aside the award on liability in England.

“We overcame numerous hurdles and faced a hostile tribunal, which relied on the testimony of a principal witness who had died before the hearing and whose testimony should have been discounted. It is on record that I fought had for the tribunal to dispense with that evidence.”

Shasore said, “I am happy that the falsity of that testimony has now been recorded in the High Court in England. Indeed this was the ground on which I took the matter to the Federal High Court in Nigeria, which was the proper seat of the arbitration and successfully obtained an order setting aside the liability award.

“There was no basis to proceed to the damages hearing since the liability had already been set aside by a court of competent jurisdiction. Indeed, Nigeria continues to rely on this order in the proceedings in the United States. In addition, I obtained an injunction restraining the parties and the tribunal from proceeding with the arbitration.”

Written by The Interview Editors

The Interview is a niche publication, targeting leaders and aspiring leaders in business, politics, entertainment, sports, arts, the professions and others within society’s upper middle class and high-end segment in Nigeria.

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