An indigenous quarry firm operating in Ishiagu, Ebonyi State, Crushed Rock, has dragged the state government to court over alleged “unlawful sealing of its business premises and quarry” for over five months now.
The suit, filed on behalf of the plaintiff’s Company by Mike Ozekhome (SAN), had the Federal Ministry of Mines and Steel Development, the Government of Ebonyi State and the Attorney General of the State as defendants.
Others defendants are Edwin Onwe, the then Special Assistant to Governor David Umahi on Solid Minerals, and the Ministry of Solid Minerals Development
The firm in a court process obtained by the News Agency of Nigeria on Wednesday stated that it had operated its quarrying business for over 40 years within the accepted laws of the federal and state governments.
The quarry firm is praying the court, among other demands, for an order mandating the Ebonyi State Government to jointly pay to the Plaintiff the sum N500 million as damages for illegally shutting down its business.
The court processes reveal that the crisis between both parties started in May 2019 when the state government ordered the firm to re-float the quarry company at Ishiagu, Ivo LGA of Ebonyi State or have the premises sealed up.
The firm is also challenging the state government’s arbitrary increment of the haulage fees and other levies from about N2 million to N18.7 million monthly.
The matter comes up for hearing on July 9 at the Federal High Court ,Abuja.