• Monday, March 04, 2024
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Seplat Energy files for stay of execution of interim orders

Seplat appoints Udo Udoma, Okeke, Omotowa as independent non-executive directors

Indigenous energy company, Seplat Energy Plc, has said that it has taken steps against the ex parte interim orders against it and some of its officers granted by Justice I.E Ekwo of the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja.

It was reported that Justice Ekwo in suit number FHC/ABJ/CS/626/2023 – Juliet Gbaka & 2 others v. Seplat Energy Plc & 13 others granted ex parte Interim orders which restrained the board chairman, the named independent non-executive directors, the chief operating officer and the company secretary from operating or functioning as officers of Seplat Energy in any capacity or otherwise conducting the affairs of the company.

In a filing on the Nigerian Exchange Limited on Thursday, Seplat said that it had filed “an Appeal and a Motion for Stay of Execution of the Orders. Seplat Energy has been advised by its legal team that the Interim Orders, which are yet to be served on the Company or its officers, cannot be enforced until the Court of Appeal has heard and determined the Appeal and application for Stay of Execution.”

In the statement, Chioma Afe of Seplat Communications & External Affairs, said the interim orders, were yet to be served on the company or any of the affected officers.

This is the third similar petition by minority shareholders between March and April 2023, against the company.

The company had previously reported that the Federal High Court in Lagos presided over by Justice Aneke, in Moses Igbrude & 4 ors V. Seplat Energy & 2 ors, vacated the ex parte interim orders that required the Company’s CEO to step aside.

Read also: WAICA appoints Davis Iyasere as CEO

The Federal High Court in Abuja presided over by Justice Ekwo, in Federal Republic of Nigeria V. Seplat Energy & 8 ors, formally dismissed the Immigration Charge against the Company and some of its Officers, and fully discharged all named Officers. This discharge followed the Notice of Withdrawal/Discharge filed by the Director Legal of the Nigeria Immigration Service and the Company’s cooperation with the immigration authorities.

The third case was at the Federal High Court in Abuja, presided over by Justice Ekwo, in Boniface Okezie & 4 Ors. V. Seplat Energy & 9 ors, where the court refused to grant the petitioners’ request to grant ex parte interim orders restraining the company from holding its Annual General Meeting.

The company’s AGM was held on Wednesday virtually and saw shareholders approving the payment of US15 cents dividends.

The Seplat Energy Board had recommended a special dividend of US 5 cents per share to be paid to shareholders, in addition to the final quarterly dividend of US 2.5 cents per share. This brought the total dividend for the year to US 15 cents per share.

Seplat had been embroiled in a controversy after some aggrieved stakeholders accused the Chief Executive Officer, Roger Brown of racism, favouritism for expatriate workers, discrimination against Nigerians, and breach of the good governance code. The company has since denied the claims.