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US-based oil company Anadarko denied on Friday that it had broken the law in the process of obtaining title to the land where it will build the facilities for its natural gas project in northern Mozambique.
The Mozambican Bar Association (OAM) announced on Thursday that it had asked the country’s administrative court to annul the state’s land transfer to the consortium led by Anadarko.
Reacting to the OAM initiative, the company said that it had acted within the law. “We believe we have done everything necessary to comply with the DUAT [Land Use Title] process under the Land Law,” the oil company said in a written response.
Anadarko said that the DUAT acquisition process was conducted by the state firm and partner in the consortium, Empresa Nacional de Hidrocarbonetos (ENH), and by the government.
“The process was conducted by ENH and by the Government and, as such, it would be inappropriate for us to make any comments about the DUAT process,” the company said.
The company notes that it is making good progress in the implementation of the liquefied natural gas development project, emphasising its commitment to announcing its final investment decision in the first half of next year.
The OAM thinks several legal requirements were ignored in the process, including procedures for public participation in resettlement cases.
“The minutes of the public consultations of the DUAT process in question were to some extent fraudulent. The communities concerned denounced the falsity of their signatures in those minutes,” the OAM claims.
The lawsuit “is illegal because it constitutes an