Council, LAWMA Drag Lagos Firm, Residents To Court Over N218,000 Refuse Bill

LAGOS AUGUST 30TH (NEWSRANGERS)-The Alimosho Local Council and Lagos Waste Management Authority (LAWMA) have dragged a firm and residents before the Alimosho Customary Court for non-payment for refuse package services rendered to the community.
The Alimosho Council filed a suit against Gracious Faith Plaza, in charge no ACC/020/CR/PSP/2021, claiming that the defendant was owing N218, 000, before being summoned by the court on April 1, 2021. 
The prosecutor, Mr Kehinde Igesu, told the court that the defendant appeared before the court after the occupier of the plaza was served with the court processes. The plaza is situated along Akonwonjo Road.

Igesu’s position was corroborated by the representative of LAWMA’s Private Sector Participants (PSP) waste operators, who said the defendant started paying after receiving the court summon. 

The defendant said that initially they were paying bills to Iyalaje, who will later pay to LAWMA after deducting commission. “It was after the summon that we became aware that the defendant had started paying. They have paid N158, 000 to LAWMA.”

The counsel representing the defendant, Mrs Iziegbe Oseremen, explained that the occupants in the plaza started paying the money when they got invitation from the court. 

According to Osemeren, “As of today, we have outstanding balance of N10, 000 to pay in two weeks. Your Worship, my firm had to compel other occupants in the plaza to pay after we got court order. They started payment as agreed amongst ourselves that any shop that refuses to pay will not be allowed to gain access to his shop. We did not take law into our hands; it was our unanimous decision to task ourselves to pay.

“They refused to pack our debris. We are praying the court to compel them to put the record straight, to harmonise with LAWMA and clear us.”
The President of the Court, (Mrs) P.U Adeyanju, however, directed LAWMA to clear the waste as the court also ordered the defendant to pay N10, 000 balance on or before September 9, 2021. She therefore discharged and acquitted the defendant.

In a related matter, the Local Council alleged that Gbodamosi Omituntun House on No 9, Alhaji Idowu street, refused to pay the commission charged by PSP in the sum of N117, 500. 

The prosecutor, Igesu told the court that the house violated environmental sanitation law. Their offence was contrary to section 9 (2) of the Bye Law of Alimosho Local Government Law 2018. And is punishable under section 13, 14, 15, 16,19 and 25 of Alimosho Local Government Environmental Sanitation Bye Law 2018 of Lagos State.

When the case was called, the representative, Mr Olumide Gbadamosi told court that he inherited the house from his father. But he does not reside there. He noted that the 10 occupants in the building have been sent packing after he discovered that they were not paying electricity bill as well as PSP.  

In his explanation before the court, he said the occupants were owing N700, 000 electricity bill as well as LAWMA. “I got to know when they served them court notice. But I will pay 50 per cent of the money at the end of the month. I pray that they should give me two months to pay the balance of the 50 per cent.” The court therefore ordered him to sign an undertaken for the payment of the balance of N58, 500 at the end of October 2021.

The Guardian

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