In a statement issued to the press, Neconde Energy declared the allegation as “unwarranted”, while disclosing that the company is considering its legal options as regards the matter.
The company also hinted that Shell’s allegation may be its way of reacting to a law suit instituted against it by Neconde Energy in London over allegations that Shell, among other infractions, diverted millions of dollars’ worth of crude oil “from OML 42 after the acquisition of the 45 percent joint equity interest by Neconde.”
Neconde completely denies any allegation or suspicion of kickback for the acquisition of its interest in OML 42 and the statement credited to Shell suggesting the contrary, is untrue and most unfortunate.
As we reported, Mr Robinson’s alleged “wrongdoing” was uncovered following internal investigations by Shell. The alleged crime was committed the same year Shell and Italian oil company ENI SpA were made to pay about $1 billion for the OPL 245 deal in Nigeria under Robinson’s watch; money that prosecutors in Milan are alleging was used to bribe Nigerian officials in order to push through the deal. For this reason, Robinson and some other former top executives of Shell are facing trials in Italy.
Neconde Energy Limited was incorporated November 2010 as a private oil and gas company, but began full operations in late 2011 following the joint-venture acquisition of OML 42 from Shell Petroleum Development Company. Neconde owns a 45% stake in the company, while the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) owns 55% of the shares. Neconde is controlled by Nestoil Limited, a subsidiary of Obijackson Group owned by Ernest Azudialu.