Nigeria Airports Controversy: Court awards Maevis N5bn as damages

The contracts entered into by FAAN and Maevis are to be halted.

All the agreements entered by the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) with the Societe International Telecommunication Aeronautiques (SITA) should be halted and their implementation stopped, a Federal High Court in Lagos has ruled.

On Monday, Justice Ibrahim Buba awarded N5 billion as damages in favour of Maevis Nigeria Ltd., in a suit against SITA.

Justice Buba awarded the amount and also granted all other reliefs sought by the plaintiff.

Maevis had filed the suit against SITA for willfully inducing FAAN to breach a subsisting agreement it had with it.

The plaintiff averred in their statement of claim that it entered into a concessionary agreement with FAAN on October 31, 2007.

“The contract was for the supply of Airport Operations Management System (AOMS), to the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport (NAIA), Mallam Aminu Kano Airport, and the Port Harcourt Airport.

“It was agreed that the contract would last for 10 years and renewable every five years subject to satisfactory performance,’’ the plaintiff averred.

The plaintiff also said that it supplied and installed the equipment at the MMIA and NAIA, while facilities were deployed to the Kano and Port-Harcourt Airports for installation.

According to the plaintiff, five years into the agreement and after it had committed over N5 billion into the project, FAAN terminated the agreement on Feb. 24, 2011, claiming it had lost N17 billion due to the incompetence of the plaintiff.

“FAAN then employed the services of the defendants, SITA, who had intentionally negotiated for patronage,’’ the plaintiff.

It said that the defendant hijacked and converted all the equipment supplied by Maevis for their operations.

“FAAN forcefully chased us out from its premises to pave the way for SITA’s take-over and enable it use the equipment provided by Maevis,’’ the plaintiff also said.

The matter generated so much furor from all parties as allegations of foul play and incompetence were traded about. For this reason, SITA was dragged to court by Maevis.

The plaintiff therefore sought an injunction, restraining the defendant from executing any of the agreement with FAAN, as well as N5 billion as general damages for conversion of equipment.

Justice Buba granted all reliefs sought by plaintiff, and ordered it to pay N5 billion to Maevis as general damages.

(NAN)


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