The mistake was said to have surfaced in the 11th edition of Administrative Map produced by the National Broadcasting Commission in the year 2002.
The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) was said to have in its letter dated 3rd July, 2002 in response to Rivers State Government’s protest admitted its mistake and promised to correct it in the 12th edition of the administrative map.
Failure of the National
Broadcasting Commission to rectify the mistake as promised made the Rivers
State Government to file a suit against the Attorney-General of Bayelsa State
and the Attorney-General of the Federation before the Supreme Court in the
The Supreme Court in 2012 ruled in favour of Rivers State and ordered for the correction of the error.
By August 2019, when the mistake was yet to be corrected, the Rivers State Government instituted a suit before the Federal High Court in Abuja solely against the NBC, seeking an order of mandamus convincing it to correct its error.
On granting the plaintiff’s prayers in his judgment delivered on Monday, Justice Ekwo ordered the commission to produce the 12th edition of the Administrative Map immediately, restoring River Santa Barbara as the inter-state boundary between Rivers and Bayelsa states, as it was in the year 1996 when Bayelsa State was carved from Rivers State.
He added that the commission was duty-bound to obey the 10th July, 2012 judgment of the Supreme Court, which had confirmed River Santa Barbara as the boundary between the states, by immediately correcting its self-admitted error of designating River San Bartholomew as the boundary of the states.
Justice Ekwo also instructed that the judgment be served on the relevant statutory bodies, especially, the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission and the office of the Accountant-General of the Federation for them to immediately update the amount of oil revenue accruable to it with the reassign of the Soku oil field to the initial one.