Business thrives when laws are obeyed | NPA speaks on termination of agreement with Intels

The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) says it gave the Integrated Logistics Services (Intels) to comply with the Federal Government’s directive on the Treasury Single Account (TSA).

The NPA spokesman, Abdullahi Goje, said this in a statement on Friday.

Reacting to the threats by the company to withdraw its investment plans in Nigeria, NPA said business can only “thrives in favour of everyone involved when the laws of the country of operation are adhered to“.

The Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, had directed NPA to terminate its boat pilotage monitoring and supervision agreement with Intels.

But Intels vowed to fight the termination, arguing that the TSA was not part of its initial agreement with the NPA, and the termination is inimical to its operations.

The statement read, “To start with, we must inform our stakeholders and the general public that the authority relied on the advice of the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, in arriving at the decision to terminate the contract.

This legal advice was sought after more than one year of attempts to get Intels to comply with the federal government’s directive on the treasury single account (TSA).

The first of such correspondence was through a letter written by the former executive director, finance and administration, Mr Olumide Oduntan on June 28, 2016, directing the company to pay all revenues collected on behalf of the NPA into the TSA subaccount at the CBN.

All further attempts by the Authority to get the company obey this directive was met with various excuses until the Authority wrote to seek the AGF’s legal advice on how to proceed with the NPA/Intels relationship in a letter dated May 31, 2017.

As a responsible agency of the federal government, the authority, therefore, proceeded to act as advised, which is to terminate the contract forthwith.

The authority has taken note of threats by Intels to withdraw its investment plans in Nigeria and must point that business thrives in favour of everyone involved only when the laws of the country of operation are adhered to.

No organisation is above the Nigerian constitution and it is only when all corporate entities obey the laws of the country that everyone benefits. There must be a level playing field for all players in the sector and this is the commitment of the authority.

However, the authority respects the right of Intels and all other corporate entities in Nigeria to explore opportunities presented by the courts to enforce their rights in as much as the authority is confident of the correctness of the step that it has taken.”

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