The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has requested the death certificate of Grace Taiga, a former Director of Legal at the Ministry of Petroleum Resources. Taiga, who is standing trial on allegations of bribery related to the Gas Supply Processing Agreement (GPSA), was reported to have died on August 1, 2023, according to her lawyer, Daniel Alumun.
Taiga’s trial, before Justice Olukayode Adeniyi at the Federal Capital Territory High Court, involves accusations of receiving bribes through her offshore bank account in connection with the controversial GPSA between Process and Industrial Development and the Federal Government of Nigeria.
The EFCC, after closing its case on February 27, 2023, expressed reservations about dismissing the case following Taiga’s reported death. In the recent court session, the prosecuting counsel, Mohammed Hussain, insisted that the death certificate must be produced as required by law before any decision could be made.
Taiga’s counsel, however, informed the court that the death certificate was not yet available and requested additional time to produce it. Justice Adeniyi adjourned the matter to March 6 for further updates on the death certificate.
The case is part of the fallout from the failed gas processing plant contract between Nigeria and Process and Industrial Development (P&ID). In October last year, a London arbitration court set aside an $11 billion award secured by P&ID, stating that the process through which the contract was secured in 2010 was fraudulent. The London court, while dismissing corruption allegations against Nigerian lawyers involved, highlighted lapses in legal representation, expert opinions, and overall participation by politicians and civil servants in the arbitration.