By Our Correspondent
The Director-General of former President Goodluck Jonathan’s Presidential Campaign Council, Ahmadu Ali, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and some others have been sued over their alleged refusal to pay for services rendered by some organisations engaged for the campaign.
Silon Concepts Limited, in a suit filed before the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), alleged that Ali, the PDP and former Finance Minister, Senator Nenadi Usman, who served as the Director of Finance in ex-President Jonathan’s campaign organisation, have refused to pay an outstanding N70million balance for a campaign contract awarded it.
The firm averred that it was engaged to provide “Voice SMS campaign broadcast,” which it sent to eligible voters on behalf of the PDP’s presidential candidate, former President Jonathan before the March 28, 2015 presidential poll.
The plaintiff stated that the defendants were unwilling to pay the N70m balance of the N100m contract sum. It urged the court to, among others compel the defendants to pay the outstanding sum and N15m as the cost of the suit.
Silon also seeks “an order compelling the defendants to pay N15m as cost of the suit and an order compelling the defendants to pay the bank an annual interest rate of 10 per cent on the sum of N70m until the said sum is fully liquidated”.
Silon claimed, in its originating processes, that the PDP, through Ali, agreed to pay it N100m for a contract of sending ‘Voice SMS campaign broadcast’ to eligible voters as part of the campaign for the party’s presidential candidate. Silon claimed that it successfully executed the project with continued assurance from the defendants that the balance would be made available in no distant time.
Silon’s Managing Director, Sylvester Odion stated in a statement of claim that the PDP only paid N20m as initial payment instead of N30m as agreed and that the ex-Finance Minister, Nenadi Usman paid the N20m through a cheque in the name of a company, Joint Dimension Nigeria Limited, whose account Usman serves as the sole signatory.
Odion stated that the PDP had agreed to pay the full balance for the contract to his company before the election.
He added that following consistent demand for payment by his company, the PDP only issued a cheque of N10m to his company on May 19, 2015, remaining a balance of N70m.
“That I know the plaintiff’s offer was accepted by the defendants on March 5, 2015 wherein it agreed to pay the plaintiff the sum of N100m only for the project.
“That I know that the terms of its engagement as clearly highlighted in the defendants letter of engagement, the approved sum of N100m only was to be paid before the kick-off of the project but only the sum of N20m was released to it for the take-off with the promise to pay the balance before the 2015 presidential election.
“That I know the said sum of N20m was paid to the plaintiff by 3rd defendant (Usman) through a cheque of a company known as Joint Dimension Nig. Ltd of which the 3rd defendant is the sole signatory.
“That considering the calibre of the persons involved the plaintiff had no cause to doubt the credibility of the offer. That the plaintiff went ahead and executed the project successfully with continued assurance from the defendants the balance will be made available in no distance time.
“That the defendants failed to honour their words and could not pay the balance and the plaintiff made demand (letter dated March 26, 2015) for payment of the balance through the office of the then 1st defendant’s chairman Board of Trustees and adviser, presidential campaign organisation (Chief Tony Anenih).
“That the defendant could not pay the balance notwithstanding the said demand but only issued another cheque of N10m to the plaintiff on May 19, 2015.
“That I know the plaintiff held series of meetings with the defendants before and after the issuance of the last cheque demanding the payment of the balance but the defendants remained adamant.”
The case is yet to be assigned for hearing.