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Investor urges Court to stop sale of NITEL, MTEL

Basbsim International Limited has asked an order of the Federal High Court Abuja compelling Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE) to accept its interests to be pre-qualified in the ongoing process to sell the assets of Nigerian Telecommunications Limited Plc (NITEL) and Nigerian Mobile Telecommunications (MTEL).

 

This is contained in a suit bearing number FHC/ABJ/517/2014 filed on July 10 and made available to newsmen yesterday by Mr Christopher Eichies, counsel to the plaintiff.

 

The other respondents are the Director-General of BPE, National Council on Privatisation, NITEL, MTEL and the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF).

 

The plaintiff averred that there was no transparency in the way and manner the first to fifth defendants are going about the process.

 

The suit therefore averred that the first and fifth defendants had flagrantly deviated from the right process in disposing the assets of the sixth and seventh defendants.

 

The suit further sought a declaration that the first and second defendants refusal to allow the plaintiff submit its expression of interests on June 30 were unlawful.

 

It also sought a declaration that the third defendant had the power to prevail on the first and second defendants to accept the plaintiffs pre-qualification.

 

The suit further asked for an order directing the first defendant to accept the expression of interests duly prepared by the plaintiff and those of other companies that were rejected.

 

The suit said held that the plaintiff was a company duly registered in Nigeria under extant and sacrosanct provisions on the companies and Allied Matter Act cap 20.

 

The suit also held that the first defendant was established by the law under the Public Enterprises Commercialisation and Privatisation Act Cap 11 to undertake the divestiture of the Federal Government.

 

The suit further averred that the fifth defendant was the court appointed liquidator of seventh and eight defendants working in concert with the second and fourth defendants.

 

According to the suit, the attention of the plaintiff was drawn to the Thisday Newspaper of June 9 on page 49 wherein the first and sixth defendants invited expression of interests from the general public.

 

The suit therefore held that it was on the strength of the advertisement that the plaintiff undertook to bid and purchase the assets of the sixth and seventh defendants.

 

The plaintiff averred that it put a first financial and technical proposal and in line with international best practices and took same to the offices of the first to third defendants on June 30 as indicated in the advertorial.

 

The suit said that the plaintiff’s head of operations in Abuja was refused entry into the premises of the first defendant located at plot 11, Osun Cresent, Maitama.

 

The plaintiff held that all entreaties made by it to the first to fourth defendants to accept the proposal fell on deaf ears as the security operatives announced that they had instruction from the management not receive any proposals.

 

The plaintiff averred that the first to the fifth defendants had already predetermined those companies to whom the assets of the sixth and seventh would be sold to.

 

According to the suit, the assets of the sixth and seventh defendants which run into billions of United States dollars belonged to the people of Nigeria and not personal estate of the first to fifth defendants herein.

 

The plaintiff therefore averred that the fifth and second defendants had embarked on the alleged scheme to disenfranchise credible investors from partaking in the assets of sixth and seventh defendants.

AmarSim Associations Development Consultants

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