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Akwa Ibom firm files N10 million suit against EFCC

By Inemesit Akpan-Nsoh, Uyo
04 December 2019   |   4:02 am
Organisers of the 2013 lottery staged to mark the 25th anniversary of the creation of Akwa Ibom State, Papi Event and Promotion Limited, have filed a N10 million suit against the Economic...

Organisers of the 2013 lottery staged to mark the 25th anniversary of the creation of Akwa Ibom State, Papi Event and Promotion Limited, have filed a N10 million suit against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and one Idongesit Eyibio, who allegedly won five houses in the contest.

The victor was said to have been denied keys to the residences for reportedly violating the terms and conditions of the competition, thus approaching the anti-corruption agency after his suit against the promoters had been dismissed by the court for lacking merit.

Joined then in the suit, HU/123/2013, were the Commissioner for Lands and Attorney General of the state.

But the promoters, in the fresh action, HU/297/2019, initiated at High Court No 10 by their solicitor, Anthony Ebuk, are seeking an order declaring that “EFCC has no authority to sit on appeal over a valid judgment of a court of competent jurisdiction.”

In a statement yesterday in Uyo, the lawyer condemned Eyibio’s action whom he also accused of making “false claims of fraud and corruption against the organisers” during a live programme on an Abuja-based radio where he alleged that he won the houses but was denied the keys.

Ebuk insisted that Eyibio violated the terms and conditions of the competition by allegedly “laying ownership to the tickets he procured for persons, a claim which had been confirmed by the National Lottery Commission after it carried out an independent investigation into the matter.”

The counsel stated: “Papi Event and Promotion Limited in conjunction with the Akwa Ibom State Government organised the 25th silver jubilee anniversary lottery in 2013.

“A prominent term of the lottery was that a participant could win as many consolation prizes as possible but will not be allowed to win the star prize -one of the 25 houses – in the newly built estate more than once.

“This was to avoid a situation where one person will win all the 25 houses. This position was further confirmed in a letter dated March 25, 2013 by the National Lottery Regulatory Commission to Papi Event and Promotion Limited which drew their attention to the strict compliance with the ‘one winner, one house rule.”

The statement stated however that after the draw, one Miss Daniella Bassey emerged a winner and was given the keys to the first house subject to verification for onward transfer of the documents to her.

Reacting, Eyibio faulted the allegations, adding that “there was no sincerity on the part of the organisers.”

He alleged that none of the winners had been allocated houses.