Tribunal awards cost against Lekki Property Owners

An Arbitration Tribunal headed by Justice Achike Umunna, has awarded the sum of Thirty-Three million, nine hundred and eighty-eight naira, ninety-four kobo (N33,913,988.94) to Host Integrated Services (Facility Management Company) and against Lekki Luxury Flats Property Owners and Residents Association over a terminated contract involving the facility management services of an estate with joint facilities for individual occupants in Lekki Phase 1, Lagos.

Chairman of the Lekki Luxury Flats Property Owners and Residents Association, Engineer Emeh Udoh was joined in the suit.

The tribunal which granted the claim on September 18, 2018 specifically made the final   award concerning the clause in the agreement defining the mode of payment as inserted by the Lekki Luxury Flats Property Owners  and Residents Association (LLFPORA) at the commencement  of the agreement.

The contract was sequel to an invitation bid from ExxonMobil Staff Cooperative Multipurpose Society Limited for the facility management services of the Lekki Luxury Flats.

After a successful bid, there was another invitation from the ExxonMobil Co-op Limited, for commercial tender for the facilities management services of the Luxury flats on March 1, 2013.

The matter however resulted in court proceedings between the parties when the contract signed on May 24 2013 was served a letter of contract termination on March 14 2014 to expire on April 15 2014.

The claimant while insisting that the facility management contract was not terminated in accordance with laid down terms, and with its workers denied access into the estate in violation of the 30-day notice as stipulated in clause 7.3 of the contract, took the matter to an Arbitration Tribunal for redress.

It claimed that as at the time the contract was terminated, there were some outstanding payments due and payable to it.

Specifically, Claimant said it was entitled to payments for work done under the maintenance contract and other jobs arising from the preparation and implementation of a snag report. It maintained that the respondents were liable to pay for the outstanding invoices for the jobs done with interests and damages, even as the envisaged   2-year contract was terminated midstream.

The Respondents however denied liability in any form and justified the termination of the facility management contract on the alleged incompetence on the part of the claimant. While denying the monetary claims, the respondents further justified the contract termination on the grounds that residents of the estate refused to pay their maintenance bill as a result of complaints of incompetence and sexual molestation by staff of the claimant.

In its findings, the Arbitral Tribunal comprising Achike Umunna (Presiding) and retired Hon Justice E.O. Sanyaolu and Sophia Abiri-Franklin met with counsel of the claimants and Respondents to deliberate on crucial points of law in deciding the case.

In making the final award in the dispute between Host Integrated Services limited and Lekki Flats Property Owners and Residents Association, the Tribunal said it took into consideration the terms of the contract and the nagging issues that made arbitration inevitable.

In the Certified True Copy (CTC) it deliberated on the points of claim as well as points of defense and relied on several documents among others.

The tribunal findings considered and ruled on claims and counter claims to decide that claimant is entitled to the sum of Thirty-three million, nine hundred and eighty-eight naira, ninety-four kobo (N33,913,988.94) being outstanding unpaid bills.

The tribunal further stated that an additional 15% will accrue on the sum from June 30 2014 until final liquidation in line with clause 7.4 of the contract between the two parties.

 

 

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