Posted by News Express | 28 March 2014 | 3,275 times
The Lagos State Government has faulted yesterday’s judgment by the Federal High Court sitting in the state, which outlawed the collection of tolls on the Lekki-Ikoyi Bridge.
Reacting to the judgement, Lagos State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Ade Ipaye, said that the judgment did not specifically address many questions raised by the applicant, neither did it grant any of the declarations sought.
“The pronouncements referred to above are capable of being interpreted as court orders, hence our decision to appeal and seek a stay of execution immediately,” he stated, vowing to appeal the ruling.
Ipaye argued that the court did not bar the government from collecting tolls on the bridge, adding that motorists should maintain the status quo pending the determination of the appeal.
“The judge,” according to him, “erred when he held that the Nigerian Inland Waterways Authority was the only agency authorised to regulate inland waterways in Nigeria.”
The commissioner said that the second fundamental error was the assumption of the court that the Private Public Partnerships Law of Lagos State 2011, which was cited in support of toll collection did not apply, simply because the bridge construction was not by public-private partnership.
“Contrary to the court’s assumption, Section 29 of the law clearly states that it applies to public infrastructure or public assets,” he said, adding: “Tolls can be collected on any public infrastructure irrespective of its construction history and the collection was to relieve the states Consolidated Revenue Fund and enable it to offset debts incurred on the construction and to keep the bridge properly maintained.”
News Express reports that toll collection on the road has continued despite the Federal High Court ruling given by Justice Saliu Saidu in the suit filed by human rights lawyer, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa.
•Photo shows Lekki-Ikoyi Bridge.
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