Rotimi Amaechi
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ICTN: Amaechi defies restraining court order, contempt proceedings may be initiated against him to commit him to prison

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The Minister of Transportation, Mr. Chibuike Amaechi, has been alleged of working in defiance of a subsisting court order restraining him and his agents from appointing Medtech Scientific Ltd and Rozi International Nigeria Ltd as the operators of the International Cargo Tracking System in Nigeria (ICTN) pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice in a pending suit against him.

The Citizens Advocacy for Social and Economic Rights (CASER) had slammed a suit against the minister, challenging the procurement processes involving the appointment of an implementation agent for ICTN in the country.

It has, therefore, threatened to instruct its legal representatives to “promptly initiate contempt proceedings against the minister or any other persons who are defying the subsisting order of the court with a view to committing them to prison for contempt of court’’.

CASER said the implementation of the ICTN in Nigeria is of such crucial importance that it cannot be conducted in defiance of law and standard procedure.

A statement the Executive Director, Barrister Frank Tietie, titled, “ICTN CASE: HON. CHIBUIKE AMAECHI RISKS IMPRISONMENT IN FLAGRANT DISOBEDIENCE OF THE ORDER OF COURT’’, was made available to Persecondnews on Sunday.

It said Amaechi is working in defiance of the restraining Order of Court issued by the Honourable Justice D.U. Okorowo of the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on the 20th of December 2021 in the suit no. FHC/ABJ/CS/1587/2021 filed by the incorporated Trustees of Citizens Advocacy for Social and Economic Rights (CASER) against Amaechi and others.

Others are the Bureau of Public Procurement, the Attorney General of the Federation, Medtech Scientific Ltd and Rozi International Nigeria Ltd.

The Order of the court further restrained the minister, his servants, agents, privies or through any person or persons however described or termed from giving further approval and waivers in the planned appointment of the Medtech Scientific Ltd and Rozi International Nigeria Ltd as the operators or parading themselves or functioning as the operators of the International Cargo Tracking System (ICTN) in Nigeria and from taking any further steps towards nominating any company or entity to be operators of ICTN in Nigeria pending the hearing and determination of the Motion on Notice.

The statement said: “Whereas the said Order of the Federal High Court restraining the Honourable Minister and his agents is still subsisting, we have received reports that the Federal Ministry of Transportation and the Nigerian Shippers Council are working and holding spirited meeting under the instructions of the Honourable Minister, Chibuike Amaechi to ensure that the following companies : Medtech Scientific Limited and Rozi International Nigeria Ltd and Frabemar SRL are appointed the implementation agent of the International Cargo Tracking Note (ICTN) in Nigeria.

“These actions constitute a direct subversion and disobedience to the Standing Orders of restraining injunction against all the parties in the pending suit.

“It should be reiterated that CASER filed the suit in the public interest, considering the dire security implications and serious economic consequences for the Federal Government of Nigeria and indeed all Nigerians, who would risk continuing to groan under the heavyweight of insecurity and dwindling financial resources in the event of appointing incompetent and compromised persons to operate the International Cargo Tracking Note in  Nigeria which would be tragic.

“During the pendency of a suit, parties are expected to maintain the status quo and to refrain from acts that would prejudice the powers of the court to avoid foisting a fait accompli on it.

“It, therefore, amounts to contempt of court in the manner the Honourable Minister of Transport in defiance of the Court Order,  has been authorizing the Nigerian Shippers Council to have meetings between and among Medtech Scientific Ltd and Rozi International Nigeria Ltd and Frabemar SRL who are parties to the pending suit in the Federal High Court.’’

Persecomndnews had reported that FRABEMAR, the company hired by  Ameachi for the multi-billion dollar cargo tracking had already been kicked out of Congo, Mali, Gabon, Italy, for fraud.

More scandalous facts had emerged about the status and activities of FRABEMAR in Africa, the company that Nigeria’s Minister of Transportation, Mr. Chibuike Ameachi, guided by the immediate past Executive Secretary of Nigerian Shippers Council, Hassan Bello, had singlehandedly contracted for multi-billion-dollar cargo tracking“due diligence’’ on companies.

FRABEMAR, according to documents sourced from the Democratic Republic of Congo, was kicked out of Congo, Mali, and some other African countries for fraud against the states, corrupting ministers, and government officials.

The Office of Inspector-General of Police had on August 31, 2012 indicted FRABEMAR and the state company, OGEFREM of corruption and embezzlement.

Prof. Boniface Musambi Kabisa, Deputy IG in charge of suppression of corruption and misappropriation of public funds, had written to the Attorney General, Public Prosecutor at the Supreme Court of Justice reporting criminal offences relating to the contract signed and perpetrated between OGEFREM and FRABEMAR, the Italian firm responsible for producing on behalf of OGEFREM, Electronic Import Information Sheets (FERI).

However, Congolese officials and OGEFREM house specialists had deplored what they called the “mafia nature’’ of the contract with the sole aim of diverting millions of American dollars to the detriment of OGEFREM with the complicity of its own leaders. Kabisa also said serious signs of corruption are also manifested by non-compliance with the public procurement rules.

“All these frauds are listed in the message from the PCA/OGEFREM which dated May 4, 2012 deplores the irregular nature and serious anomalies.’’

Calling for a probe of OGEFREM and FRABEMAR, he wrote: “We ask the Attorney General of the Republic in his capacity as Public Ministry Prosecutor to the Supreme Court of Justice to terminate this contract which gives the impression of having been negotiated by the mercenaries.

“To prosecute all members of the Board of Directors of OGEFREM from the Head for Embezzlement of Public Money and Corruption.’’

It was the first trial of Franco and Massimo Bernardini, and their company, the maritime brokerage agency, FRABEMAR in Genoa for international corruption.

“They paid bribes in Africa disguised with charity,’’ according to two well-known city brokers at the top of FRABEMAR.’’

 

 

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