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N700b Spill Compensation: Shell Heads For Appeal Court

Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) has challenged the jurisdiction of a Federal High Court in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, to hear a N700 billion oil spill compensation suit filed by members of Aghoro 1 community in the state.

The people of Aghoro 1 in Ekeremor Local Government Area sued SPDC over a May 17, 2018, oil leak from its Trans Ramos pipeline.

But SPDC’s lawyer, Michael Amadi, said the firm was challenging the court’s jurisdiction to entertain the suit.

When the suit came up for hearing, counsel for SPDC, Mr Michael Amadi, told the court that the oil firm had filed an appeal.

He urged the court to hands off the case pending the determination of the interlocutory appeal.

Justice Isa Dashen adjourned until October 19 to enable him to go through the processes filed before the court.

He added that he would await the decision of the Appellate Court.

The pantiffs are Mr Victor Akamu, Pastor Erebimienkumor Goddey, Mrs Jane Alex, Miss Edith George, Mr Israel Tomonye and FASF Associates Limited on behalf of Aghoro I community in Ekeremor Local GOvernment Area.

The plaintiffs sought a redress for the damages caused by the oil spill.

They claimed that the N33.49 million offered by SPDC was a far cry from the N700 billion claim based on a damage assessment of the impacted area.

SPDC, Shell International Exploration and Production BV, Attorney-General and Minister of Justice and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) are the defendants.

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