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Court restrains FCT minister, others from encroaching on Centenary City

A Federal High Court in Abuja has restrained the Minister of the FCT from encroaching on a portion of land belonging to the Centenary Economic…

A Federal High Court in Abuja has restrained the Minister of the FCT from encroaching on a portion of land belonging to the Centenary Economic City Free Zone (CECFZ) and Centenary City Free Zone Company (CCFZC).

Justice Inyang Ekwo also restrained the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA) and Arab Contractors Nigeria Limited. Others listed as defendants in the suit are the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (PFRN), the Attorney-General of Federation (AGF), the Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA), the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment; and the FCTA.

The management of the Centenary City had accused the FCTA of aiding Arab Contractors to convert part of the land allocated to them to its (Arab Contractors) site yard, without authority and without the permission of NEPZA which has regulatory powers over the land.

They added that Arab Contractors defaced and destroyed the masterplan of the Centenary Economic City Free Zone and that Arab Contractors now endangers the federal government’s assets and investments in the project with its conduct.

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The judgment delivered on February 6 but cited by the press on Monday upheld the arguments of the Centenary City and held that they sufficiently established their case.

Justice Ekwo said: “The plaintiffs are therefore entitled to the claims sought in this case, and I so hold.”

The Managing Director of the CCFZC, Ikechukwu Odenigwe, in a supporting affidavit, averred that his company filed the action to challenge the distortion of the land measuring 1,264.78 hectares because it has all the requisite approvals, including from the Federal Executive Council (FEC).

The Centenary City project was conceptualised under the Goodluck Jonathan administration through the then Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Anyim Pius Anyim, to commemorate Nigeria’s centenary in 2014. 

 

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