London: The Nigerian government is taking oil giants Shell and Eni to court in London, requesting the return of $1.1 billion (969 million euros) as part of a case of alleged corruption dating back to 2011, Bloomberg reported. Nigeria alleges that the money was used by the companies to buy an oil exploration licence in the Gulf of Guinea but was diverted to bribes and kickbacks, the report said.
The government alleges that Shell and Eni were partly responsible for the fact that “corrupt Nigerian officials” used the money for personal enrichment, it added. The alleged corruption is already the subject of a separate court case in Milan in which Nigeria is a civil party. Shell and Eni have always denied any unlawful action. In a statement sent to AFP on Thursday, a Shell spokesman said that the deal in 2011 was “a fully legal transaction with Eni and the Federal Government of Nigeria”. — AFP