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N700m Onitsha Urban Terminal Transport deal: Anambra govt, investor on collision course

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By Our Correspondent

The Anambra State government and authorities of Urban Terminal Transport Ltd, Onitsha are on a collision course following alleged decision of the state government to chase away the company after it had invested a whooping N700 million in the project.

Worried by the development, the company dragged the state government to an Onitsha High Court presided by Hon Justice S. I Oguji and at the resumed hearing, officials of the company said they observed to their dismay that government and its agencies which were defendants in the case, were doing everything possible to frustrate expeditious hearing of the matter.

Counsel to the plaintiff, Mr. Obinna Adindu informed the court that despite its earlier order, agencies of the state government have been making use of the property.

He also informed the court that while they were supposed to commence hearing on the matter, the defense counsel served them with court processes which, he noted, were aimed at frustrating the hearing.

Although the counsel to the plaintiff asked for costs against the four defendants namely the Anambra State government, the Commissioner for Justice and Attorney General, the Commissioner for Land and Urban Planning, and Anambra State Investment Promotion and Protection Agency, ANSIPPA, the judge declined to award costs, hoping that all the parties would argue their cases at the next hearing date, which is December 14, 2022.

Addressing reporters after the sitting, the Managing Director of Urban Terminal 1 Transport Ltd, Onitsha, Mr. Obiora said the company was surprised at the action of the state government and its agencies.

He said: “We are disappointed because this is an investment transaction that is running on heavy interest from the financial institutions. The matter was adjourned for definitive hearing and cross examination of witnesses, only for us to be served series of court processes by the defendants in court.

“To the best of our knowledge, those actions are simply meant to delay the course of justice. They are just buying time and we are surprised that a state that hurriedly chased us away from our investment without court order is saying they are not ready to defend that action.

“The judge has adjourned the case till December, 2022 and meanwhile the interest on the loan used for the investment is running.

“During the last hearing, the judge gave a definitive order that the status quo should be maintained but up till now, the government and its agencies are not respecting that order.

,”The governor and agencies of government that are meant to abide by the ruling of the court were all written and it is sad that they are flouting the order with impunity.

“This is a type of investment that the state needs to encourage other investors to come into Anambra and invest. If we are being treated in this manner after investing over N700m, how can other investors be encouraged?

Ifeizu

Ifeizu is a seasoned journalist and Managing Editor of TheRazor. He has wide knowledge of Anambra State and has reported the state objectively for over a decade.

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