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The contractor handling the Ibadan Circular road; ENL Consortium Limited, has issued a stern warning to the Seyi Makinde-led administration regarding the concession agreement the Oyo state government has with the construction company, saying that the road project is still legal and subsisting.
Mr. Oluseye Opasanya, the lawyer of ENL consortium in an advertorial signed in the pages of the Nation newspaper, stated that ENL Consortium Limited is the concessionaire of the 32-kilometer East End Wing of the 107-kilometer proposed Ibadan Ring Road under the terms of a concession agreement dated August 25, 2017, with Oyo State Government under the late former Governor Abiola Ajimobi.
Pursuant to the agreement, ENL said it was granted exclusive rights to design, finance, construct, operate and maintain the Ibadan Circular Road for a period of 35 years.
The firm noted that its attention was recently drawn to certain pronouncements credited to the Oyo State Government in connection with a proposal to re-award the project to another entity, in spite of the continued validity of its concession rights in accordance with the concession agreement.
The firm claimed that to re-award the project would be unlawful and politically motivated, insisting that the move is an attempt to “expropriate the assets and contractual rights of ENL, contrary to the terms of the subsisting concession agreement and the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended)”.
“For the record and for the avoidance of doubt, ENL wishes to state that the responsibility for financing the project was placed entirely on ENL; and since it was awarded the Concession Rights in 2017, it has, at its own cost, undertaken various activities in furtherance of the project, including commissioning of the survey and construction designs (incorporating bridges, culverts, and the drainage system) for the 32-kilometer road; clearing and removal of the topsoil from about 30 kilometers of the route; earthworks construction on about five kilometers of the route; laying of asphalt on over two kilometers of the route; blasting of heavy stone and laying of stone base on about one kilometer of the route; installation of streetlights on about two kilometers of the route: and paying compensation to farmers and families for the acquisition of land required for the project.”
ENL also stated that over N3,960,000,000 of its own private capital has been expended already before this move by the current Oyo State administration.
It warned that it has already initiated a formal dispute resolution proceeding in accordance with the provisions of the concession agreement.
“Any person who engages with Oyo State Government in relation to the project in disregard of this notice does so at his or her risk as any right, interest, title, or privileges that may be granted to such person by Oyo State Government in connection with the project shall be null and void.”
“ENL hereby reserves all legal rights and remedies it may have now, or in the future whether under contract, law or otherwise, against any person or group of persons who induces a breach of the Concession Rights or its interest in the project, in any manner whatsoever,” the firm stated.