Igonikon is a partner in the Dispute Resolution practice of the leading Nigerian law firm, Templars.
She routinely appears as counsel in large commercial disputes before the major courts in Nigeria. She has also acted as counsel in a number of London and Lagos seated ad hoc and institutional international arbitrations. Her institutional experience includes cases conducted under the UNCITRAL, LCIA and Lagos Court of Arbitration Rules. Her practice spans across complex tax, energy, construction, financial services, and environmental disputes.
Her career highlights include successfully representing a number of multinational corporations in court and arbitration against a major State-owned enterprise in Nigeria. She has also successfully challenged billions of dollars in tax assessments and rulings made against her clients by the Nigerian Federal Inland Revenue Service.
Before joining Templars, she worked in the dispute resolution practice of another leading Nigerian law firm. She is a member of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce International Arbitration Centre and International Law Association, Nigeria Branch.
A Selection Of Relevant Experience
Part of the team that successfully represented;
- the Usan Contractor Group (ExxonMobil, Total, Chevron, Nexen) in an approx. $1.5 billion first-of-its-kind cost-recovery arbitration claim and related litigation against the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), arising from the NNPC’s breach of the parties’ Production Sharing Contract;
- the Erha PSC Contractor Group (ExxonMobil and Shell) in arbitration against the NNPC arising from a crude entitlement dispute. Obtained a final award of over US$2.042 billion in favour of ExxonMobil and Shell which was featured as Number 4 on American Lawyer’s ALM Focus Europe list of the world’s 12 biggest arbitral awards of 2011 to 2013.
- Successfully acted for two investment vehicles in a US$ 4 billion multi‐party ad hoc arbitration and related litigation initiated by Econet Wireless limited arising out of a pre‐emption rights dispute among shareholders of a leading emerging markets telco.
- Represented Nigeria LNG (NLNG) Limited in a tax appeal against the federal tax authority- FIRS challenging a Withholding tax assessment of US$231,085,385.00 (Two Hundred and Thirty-One Million, Eight Five Thousand, Three Hundred and Eighty-Five United States Dollars). During the pendency of the appeal, she Successfully negotiated with FIRS on behalf of NLNG to reduce the tax assessment of US$231,085,385 to US$3,252,181, saving over 98% of the original amount.
- Led the team that successfully obtained a US$23million award on behalf of Depthwize Nig Limited in arbitration against Century Exploration and Production Limited over breeches and the non-performance of conditions precedents under an offshore drilling contract.
- Successfully represented an energy multinational in two concurrent arbitrations arising from disputes relating to Engineering Procurement and Construction Contracts for the development of a PMS Tank Farm and the construction of a multi‐story administrative building.
- Obtained an award in favour of Nigerian Breweries Plc (NB) – a subsidiary of Heineken and Nigeria’s largest beverage (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) brewer – in a dispute with a national gas supplier/pipeline on the appropriate interpretation of the “take or pay” provisions in a Gas Sale and Purchase Agreement (GSPA) between the parties.
- Represented Phillips Oil Company (Nigeria) Limited (POCNL) at the tax appeal tribunal- TAT in respect of its dispute with the FIRS/ Federal Government of Nigeria for the wrongful assessment of taxes, resulting from the FIRS disallowance of certain tax offsets and incentives accruing to POCNL under a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) executed between Federal Government of Nigeria and a number of International Oil Companies