On February 25th, the Supreme Court instructed Seplat and Brittania-U to Stay Action and admonished parties in the case before it , over Chevron’s sale of Oil Mining Leases (OMLs) 52, 53 and 55 to realise that the apex court is now fully in charge of the appeal.
Now despite this Seplat CEO Austin Avuru told a Reuters Africa Investment Summit on Tuesday that he was still going ahead with the deal “while we trash out whatever is left of the litigation”. This is despite the Supreme Court asking that all parties show restraints. Here is an excerpt of his remarks as culled from Reuters;
He said Seplat had finalised the acquisition of a 40 percent stake in OML 53, an onshore oil block, from Chevron (CVX.N), despite an ongoing legal case in which Nigeria’s Brittania-U has sought to block the U.S. company from selling the assets which it says it had paid a deposit to buy.
“We have now been able to move that to closure and Chevron has handed over the asset to us,” Avuru said, adding that the company would be operating the oil block “while we thrash out whatever is left of the litigation.” Avuru said his company was budgeting for 2015 with an oil price assumption of $50 a barrel, and $60 for 2016 and was not impacted by the devaluation of the local currency because the gas business with naira revenues provided a hedge.