Monday, 25 March 2013

News Release: White And Case UK To Lead ESQ Workshop On Power Documentation And Financing

ESQ Legal will be delivering a two day power workshop. The workshop will involve an analysis of some of the key terms of standard Gas Supply Agreements, Power Purchase Agreements and Engineering, Procurement and Construction Contracts and identify key bankability issues that arise in connection with the financing and structuring of financing arrangements relating to the development of power projects. It will also provide guidance on the necessities for structuring power projects in order to make them bankable and attractive to international finance providers and involve an analysis of the contractual matrix and legal and regulatory framework in this context.

Presenters will also take participants through the current Nigerian regulatory framework for the power sector. It will include an analysis of the Nigerian standard form Gas Supply Agreement and Power Purchase Agreement and specific bankability issues relating to these documents. Participants will participate in an interactive case study which will provide them the opportunity to apply (with guidance from the presenters) the issues discussed to a worked example.

The presenters will draw from their experience on working on power projects in various jurisdictions (including in Europe, Africa and the Middle East).

This training is organised by ESQ Seminars with support from the Energy and Infrastructure Group

Date: 11th -12th April, 2013 
Time: 9am -5pm Daily
Venue: Civic Centre, Victoria Island, Lagos
Registration Fee: N 250, 000

Jason Kerr
Partner, White & Case, London
Kirsti Massie
Partner, White & Case, London

Wolemi Esan
Partner, Olaniwun Ajayi LP

Nneka Wood
Senior Associate, White & Case,
Abu Dhabi
Luke Robottom
Senior Associate, White & Case,
Abu Dhabi

Registration Details:

Participants resident in Nigeria: N250,000 per person.
Participants from the rest of the world will pay dollar equivalence
Full payment must be received in order to process your registration.

Fees Include:
• Attendance at all working sessions
• Conference materials, including any available speakers’ papers submitted
• Lunch and tea breaks
• A free copy of ESQ Legal practice magazine

How To Register And Make Payments:
Participants resident in Nigeria: Registration fee is N250,000
Participants wishing to pay in Naira should and send proof of payment to: Email:

Bank Details:
Bank Transfer Details (Nigerian Delegates):
Account Name: Legal Blitz Legal Consultancy
Account Number: 1722006106
Account Name: Legal Blitz Legal Consultancy
Bank: Keystone Bank
Account Number: 1000557736
All Cheques should be made payable to Legal Blitz Legal Consultancy. Group
discounts are also available for five (5) or more delegate places.

Participants From The Rest Of The World:
Participants must pay in US Dollars by cheque, bank draft or transfer and should complete the attached registration form in English and send to the e-mail below with proof of payment:

Bank Transfer Details (For Foreign Participants):
Citibank New York Account Details For USD Payment
Correspondent Bank
Name And Address: Citibank N.A New York 111,Wall Street, New York
ABA NO: 21000089
Beneficiary Bank
Name And Address: Access Bank PLC
Swift Code: ICOBNGLA
Account Number: 36023765
Further Credit Party: (Legal Blitz/3300201509)

Please ensure that a copy of the bank transfer is attached to your registration form.
Please e-mail proof of payment to:

Your Registration Will Only Be Confirmed Once Proof Of Payment Has Been Received.
You Should Receive A Confirmation Of Your Registration within 48 hours, If You Do Not, Please Contact:
Legal Blitz at:
E-mail: power
Or Call: +2348035269055, +2348065171962

General Registration Information:
Promotional Literature
Please note that no individual or organisation may display or distribute publicity
material or other printed matter during the conference, unless by prior arrangement
with Legal Blitz and companies wishing to discuss promotional opportunities should
contact Legal Blitz.

Cancellation of Registration:
If cancellation is received in writing at Legal Blitz or by email
( at least 3 days before the event fees will be refunded less a 25%
administration charge; we regret that no refunds can be made after this date.

Travel Arrangements And Visas:
Participants are responsible for making their own travel arrangements. It is
recommended that you check your visa requirements with your local Embassy or
consulate. We are unable to dispatch visa invitation letters to support your visa
application prior to receipt of your registration form and full payment of
registration fees. Please apply for your visa in good time.

Delegates are responsible for making accommodation reservations directly with the hotel and enter into an agreement with the hotel regarding credit card guarantees, cancellation terms and conditions, and room rates. Legal Blitz cannot accept responsibility for hotel accommodation disputes between a delegate and the hotel.

Opinion: Still On The Call For Amnesty For Boko Haram

By Nelson Ekujumi

Recently, His Eminence, the Sultan of Sokoto and President-General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar was reported in the media to have canvassed granting of amnesty to members of Boko Haram as a way forward  in arresting the state of insecurity that has beclouded the Northern part of Nigeria in particular. While one cannot but commend the revered traditional ruler for expressing his opinion on the way forward out of this mess, one cannot but disagree with him.

Unlike those who are criticizing the Sultan’s position based on the premise that the situation that warranted granting of amnesty to Niger Delta militants was not the same with what is prevailing in the North now, the truth of the matter is that the situations are the same. The criminality being perpetuated by Boko Haram elements is similar to the criminality exhibited by the Niger Delta militants who also pioneered the crime of kidnapping for ransom which has now assumed a life of its own.

While some people are of the opinion that what the Niger Delta militants were fighting was environmental degradation and exploitation, one can safely assert that what one understood Boko Haram was fighting for initially but which has been abused was the right to self determination, which is a tenet of federalism. A major cause of the crises bedeviling us as a people and which has earned us the reputation of a failed state based on noted indexes, is the absence of true federalism, which we mouth, but practice Unitarianism. One can also say that a major calamity that has befallen us as a people is the absence of democratic ethos which has culminated in the lack of listening ear to legitimate demands by those in authority, who always use violence to suppress people’s agitations. This was what led to violence and criminality in the Niger Delta and now Boko Haram in the North.

There is also the school of thought in which Mr. President belong to, that says that you cannot grant amnesty to people you don’t know or to put it properly in the Presidents words, “ghosts”. This line of argument can be countered from the position that if Mr. President is sincerely asserting that Boko Haram as a group are ghosts, then it means he’s not in charge or that he is being misled by his security chiefs who ought to know better if they are alive to their constitutional duties.

A worrying dimension to the issue of Boko Haram is that it seems some of the security challenges being experienced in the North raise a lot of questions about the capability of the security agencies who are always quick to ascribe any act of criminality to Boko Haram just to cover their inefficiencies. The pervasiveness of insecurity all over the country today is alarming and calls for concerted efforts by all.

Granting of amnesty to criminals is a condemnable act because it amounts to endorsing criminality, which is a violation not only of our laws but also of our values as Africans, which was one of the reasons why some Nigerians opposed the granting of amnesty to criminals in the Niger Delta, masquerading as freedom fighters. The question that comes to mind is that in what ways has amnesty resolved the youth restiveness in the Niger Delta which has manifested in crimes such as oil theft, stealing, cultism, armed robbery, kidnapping, bunkering, etc? Criminals, because of their penchant for booties are never satisfied and will keep asking for more and so, the only way to reform is to whip them into the line of societal approved conduct rather than condoning them through amnesty. The failure of the amnesty programme was one of the reasons that made President Goodluck Jonathan to award the contract for the protection of oil pipelines to some of his kiths and kin at the expense of the constitutional responsibility of the security agencies.

Instead of granting amnesty to Boko Haram members and legitimizing criminality like the Nigerian state has done with regard to Niger Delta, it is our fervent desire and hope that Mr. President and the National Assembly would sincerely and patriotically realize the enormity of the problems at hand which has the potential to destroy us. It is hoped that our elected officials at all levels should realize the need for the convocation of a genuine Sovereign National Conference (SNC) of ethnic nationalities as a way forward. The faulty structure of the Nigerian state, our army of unemployed youths, our distorted values, etc  are recipe for violence and the only way to stop the  drift is for us to discuss true federalism.

A word is enough for the wise.

(Ekujumi is the Executive Director,
Centre for Rights and Grassroots Initiative (CRGI)
26a Adesina Street, Ikeja, Lagos.
08023172694, 07033853232)

News Release: Niger Delta Militants’ Body Says Amnesty For Boko Haram Will Be Mistake

In the past few weeks and maybe months, we have been inundated with the calls for Amnesty from key leaders and elements of Northern Nigeria. From the Sultan of Sokoto, who, as leader of Muslims and the Islamic faith in the Nigerian state, and without any shame, preferred to undermine himself and join the band of failed Northern leaders to demand for Amnesty for the blood sucking human-hating infidels who today parade Northern Nigeria under the label of Boko Haram.

The Sultan, in calling for amnesty, has shown that he has lost the leadership of the Islamic faith in the Nigerian State. He should be deposed immediately.

To strengthen that shame on Northern elites, the likes of Aminu Masari (who ate from the palms of former Governor Peter Odili, Nuhu Ribadu, Professor Ango Abdullahi ( a former University don) as well as some former members of the Nigerian Armed Forces who are now stakeholders of the Northern Elders Forum, have also lend their voices to the call for Amnesty for the Islamist extremist movement that has killed more than 400 Christians through bombing of churches, straight-faced slitting of the throats of Christian faithfuls while they attended church programs etc.

Boko Haram or whatever names they append to themselves, has killed enough men, women and children. They have murdered in cold and hot blood far more soldiers and officers of the Nigeria police than any other insurgency in the history of the Nigerian State.

There are families who will never recover from the wickedness and murderous treachery that Boko Haram has visited on them.

The blood of all those who Boko Haram has so viciously and satanically killed will be on all those who today call for Amnesty. Boko Haram represents the fullness of filthiness of the earth. If Boko Haram is given amnesty, we declared amnesty for the Niger Delta as null and void and we shall go to war first with the Nigerian state and then, all the Northern leaders who support that evil cause and then those who have acquired billions in investment in the Niger Delta. We will spare none of them.

We see the Amnesty granted to agitating elements of the Niger Delta as a big distraction from the more serious issues of developing the Niger Delta.

The East-West road is not yet completed. Nothing is being heard about the Niger Delta Coastal road whose initial design has been successfully completed by its design consultants. We hear nothing about the Lagos-Calabar rail link. We hear nothing about increased participation of the indigenous Niger Deltans in managing the oil and gas resources of the Niger Delta even while our land and waters continue to be exploited and devastated each passing day.

The Nigerian state, with or without Jonathan, will not believe what will happen when we turn the cart. What belongs to Caesar must be given to Caesar. Nothing more, Nothing less.

We do not demand for the proceeds of groundnut pyramids. Neither do we demand for the proceeds of Cattle rearing or Nomadic farming. Our demands are simple. Use the billions of dollars harvested from our lands to develop our lands.

If this is not done, YET again, we will go back to the creeks and challenge the existence of the Nigerian State.

A simple word should be good enough for the those who say they are wise.

God bless the good people of the Niger Delta. Their patience and resilience, in the midst of such much perverse provocation has kept kept Nigeria alive.

The Struggle has yet again, begun.

Cynthia Whyte
Joint Revolutionary Council (JRC)

Videonews: Tear Gas Used Against Protesters In France

U-Report: “It Wasn’t Easy Bringing Achebe For Ahiajoku Lecture”------Ada Okwuonu

Dr. Ada Okwuonu

The immediate past Deputy Governor of Imo State, Dr. Ada Okwuonu has described the death of Prof Chinua Achebe as another monumental loss to Ndigbo and the entire world.

Dr Okwuonu said this recently while reacting to the news of the late author of the famous African prose, ‘Things Fall Apart’.

The former number two citizen of Imo State said that the loss of Achebe to mankind was like the loss of the Ikemba of Nnewi, Chief Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu.

"It is well known that Chinua Achebe was the best writer in Africa. His views encapsulated the African experience more especially the Igbo perspective. Mankind has indeed lost another intellectual" she added.
Reacting further, Dr. Okwuonu recounted how she led a delegation to the United States of America (US) in 2009 to invite the Ogidi-Anambra born professor to deliver the 2010 Ahiajoku Lecture in Owerri.

"I can still remember that it was not easy convincing Achebe to come to Imo State to deliver the 2010 Ahiajoku Lecture Series. It was a big challenge because before then, the late novelist was already disenchanted with the leadership and security situation in Nigeria. However, we tried our best to convince him to take up the lecture. This was possible through the help of the late icon’s bosom friend, Prof Mike Echeruo, she summed up.