Nigeria suffered a setback in its pursuit for justice over the controversial Malabu deal, as a London Judge has ruled on Friday, that the $1 billion law suit against Oil giants, Shell and Eni, cannot go ahead in England, United Kingdom, UK.
The High Court Judge, Christopher Butcher, said that the courts in the UK, do not have jurisdiction to hear the claim.
In his written decision, the Judge disclosed that the English case has the same essential facts and parties, as a parallel proceeding in Italy, also brought by the Nigerian Federal Government over the Malabu deal.
It was earlier reported how both Oil giants argued to stop or stay proceedings in the $1 billion lawsuit brought by the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Virtual hearings in the case took place last month, during which the companies argued to halt the $1 billion English suit, as duplicating the ongoing criminal trial and parallel civil claim being brought by Nigeria in Italy, over the controversial OPL 245.
The Defendants, Eni, Shell, and others, asked for the court to decline jurisdiction under Article 29 of the recast Brussels Regulations, as the Italian case against the companies is still ongoing.
In March, the Nigerian Government lost out in its bid to postpone the massive claim against the Oil giants, in a London court. Mark Pelling, a Judge at the London court, ruled that it should not wait for a connected Italian ruling.
Nigeria wanted the April court date postponed until January 2021, when a connected criminal case in Milan, is expected to have been concluded.
The Oil companies and former and current Executives, face corruption charges linked to the Malabu scandal, a 2011 deal involving a Nigerian oil block known as OPL 245.
Officials affected in the scandal have denied any wrongdoing.
A 3-day hearing was held over the case in April.