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Court orders FAAN to account for airports toll gate revenue since 2015

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Court orders FAAN to account for airports toll gate revenue since 2015

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The Federal High Court in Lagos Friday, February 23, ordered the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) to disclose how much it made from toll gates and parking lots fees in all federal government-owned airports and how much it remitted from January 2015 till January 2024.

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Justice Ibrahim Ahmad Kala, who made the order, compelled the FAAN (the sole Respondent) to provide details of the revenue to a public interest applicant, The Registered Trustees of The Centre for Law & Civil Culture.

The judge gave the federal agency three months to comply with the order.

The applicant filed the suit marked FHC/L/CS/1086/2022 following the Respondent’s failure to accede to its freedom of information request of August 24, 2022, saying this violated the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act, 2011.

B.O. Fowewe represented the Applicant while A.A. Lawal represented the Respondent.

Following the conclusion of the hearing on January 25, 2024, with both parties adopting their written addresses, the court adjourned for judgment.

At the resumption of proceedings Friday, the judge granted the Applicant’s prayer, noting that it had satisfied all the conditions stipulated in Section 20 of the FOI Act.

Justice Kala held: “I shall, therefore, reach the irresistible conclusion that the lone issue for determination in this case, id est. “Whether the Respondent is mandated to provide the requested information to the Applicant as provided for under the Freedom of Information Act, 2011 and the Applicant entitled to the reliefs sought in their Originating Application,” is resolved against the Respondent and in favour of the Applicant. The Applicant’s application succeeds, and it is accordingly granted as follows:

“It is hereby declared that the refusal and failure of the respondents to accede to the Applicant’s freedom of information requests dated 24/8/2021, 6/10/2021 and 22/4/2022 requesting to know the total annual generated revenue from the toll gates and parking lots in each of the Federal Government owned Airports across the Federal Republic of Nigeria since 2015 till date is a gross violation of the Freedom of Information Act, 2011.

“An order of mandamus is, hereby, granted compelling the Respondent to avail the Applicant with the details of the statement of the accounts showing the total annual generated revenue from the toll gates and parking lots in each of the Federal Government owned Airports across the Federal Republic of Nigeria and evidence of yearly remittance of such sum so generated per year from January 2015 to January 2024 within a period of three months from today.”

(The Nation)