A Federal High Court has ordered the return of a major crude oil block, OPL 245 to the Federal Government.
The oil block which contains over nine billion barrels of crude oil, is Africa’s largest, and has been a subject of litigation in five countries.
Justice John Tsoho who issued the order, ruled the oil block should be in the custody of Federal Government until the conclusion of the trial.
Shell and ENI in 2011 had paid $1.1 billion into Federal Government’s coffer in London for the oil block, but over 70 per cent of the money was later transferred into the account of a company called Malabu by former petroleum resources minister, Dan Etete.
The former minister allegedly transferred over a half of the money in Malabu account into the bank account of some fake companies owned by Aliyu Abubakar, regarded as a front for top officials of the Goodluck Jonathan administration.