Daily Watch – Oando acquires AGIP, Gabonese coup leader becomes interim president

5th September 2023

Ahead of the delivery of the judgement of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal in Abuja on Wednesday, 6 September, the military and the police have said they will not condone any unlawful action by troublemakers. The Chairman of the INEC, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, had on 1 March declared Tinubu the president-elect. In the 2023 poll, the former Lagos State governor polled 8.8 million to defeat the Peoples Democratic Party standard bearer, Atiku Abubakar, who scored 6.9 million, Labour Party candidate, Peter Obi, who polled 6.1 million votes, and 15 other candidates. Atiku in his 66-page petition urged the court to cancel the election and order a fresh poll due to alleged irregularities and the fact that Tinubu’s election was invalid because of corrupt practices. He prayed the court to nullify his election and declare him the winner of the presidential election, having secured the second-highest number of lawful votes cast in the election. However, in a reply he filed through his team of lawyers led by Chief Wole Olanipekun, SAN, Tinubu questioned the legal competence of the petition. Obi in his petition argued that the election was flawed by irregularities, citing also the alleged non-qualification of Tinubu and his running mate, Kashim Shettima, to contest the election. He also alleged that Tinubu failed to win a majority of lawful votes and also one-quarter of lawful votes cast in the Federal Capital Territory. He alleged that the election was conducted in substantial non-compliance with the provision of the law.

Energy company, Oando, has reached an agreement with Italian firm, Eni, for the acquisition of 100 percent of the shares of its oil and gas unit, Nigerian Agip Oil Company. According to a statement signed by the Company Secretary, Ayotola Jagun, on Monday, the completion of the transaction is subject to ministerial consent and other required regulatory approvals. With this transaction Oando increases its current participating interests in OMLs 60, 61, 62, and 63 from 20 percent to 40 percent. Oando’s ownership stake in all NEPL/NAOC/OOL Joint Venture assets and infrastructure which include forty discovered oil and gas fields, of which 24 are currently producing, approximately forty identified prospects and leads, twelve production stations, approximately 1,490 km of pipelines, three gas processing plants, the Brass River Oil Terminal, the Kwale-Okpai phases 1 & 2 power plants (with a total nameplate capacity of 960MW), and associated infrastructure, has also increased.

The Minority in Parliament says it has postponed its planned protest march to back demands for the removal from office of the Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Ernest Addison, and his deputies. The postponement is due to a scheduled court hearing for an injunction filed by the Ghana Police Service on Wednesday, 30 August, against the protest march. Slated for Tuesday, 5 September, the group had sought to march from Makola, through Rawlings Park and Opera Square to the frontage of the Bank of Ghana head office in Accra. However, the police argued that the area is often overcrowded with human and vehicular traffic and thus going by that route could distort public order, safety and the running of essential services. 

Gabonese General Brice Oligui Nguema, who last week led a coup ending 55 years of rule by the Bongo dynasty, was sworn in on 4 September as interim president, AFP journalists saw. Oligui, head of the elite Republican Guard, led officers in a coup against President Ali Bongo Ondimba, scion of a family that had ruled since 1967. Meanwhile, Nigeria’s president and ECOWAS chair, Bola Tinubu, has hinted that he may support a nine-month transition period in Niger. He noted that Nigeria, under General Abdulsalami Abubakar, instituted a nine-month transition programme in 1998, and it proved very successful. Tinubu, who had admitted that he was under pressure to authorise military action, said he saw no reason why the Abdulsalami model cannot be replicated in Niger if the coup leaders are sincere.