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Why we want Lekki tollgate reopened -Lekki Concession Company

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THE Lekki Concession Company (LCC) has cited huge debts owed by the company to both local and international banks as reasons why the Lekki tollgate must be reopened.

Yomi Omomuwasan, the LCC manager, who said this at a press conference on Monday, stated that the company is owing N11.5 billion and $31 million respectively as of 2020 to banks.

He added that 90 percent of its employees anticipate returning to work since the gate’s closure.

“As of 2011, we had a balance of about 24 billion in naira owed to local banks and $49 million owed to an international development bank,” he said.

“Through the operation of the toll progressively, payments are being made. It is on record, the company borrowed money, and we keep mentioning areas where people can verify. They are local banks, Nigerian banks, they have names and have records. There is no way a company can lie that we are owing when they are not owing.

“90 per cent of them are youths and asking if they will be back in their jobs; this is another reason the company needs to return to operations.”

While stating that the COVID-19 outbreak impaired the company’s revenue, he said it was not right for the LCC to be shut down forever following the #ENDSARS protests and related events.

READ ALSOI joined #OccupyLekkiTollGate to save lives of protesters, says Mr Macaroni
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“There is nowhere in the world where an event happened at a place, and you close it forever,” he said.

Speaking on calls by some members of the Lagos Judicial Panel of enquiry on police brutality and protests for the gate to remain close pending when those that were killed in the event of October 20, 2020, by operatives of the Nigerian army would get justice, the manager said that there was never an order shutting down Lekki tollgate. Still, the company only stopped operations to allow for a forensic analysis of what happened during the #ENDSARS protests.

“We believe there may be some things that will be important to the panel by way of forensic audit on the scene, and we agreed that pending when this forensic audit will be done, we would not go there to do anything, because going there for us would mean clearing some burnt items, removing some certain things, calling on our insurance company to do some evaluations and calling our engineers to do some things.”

“There was not a time when we were given a preventive order, an order saying LCC cannot resume operation. We just agreed to work together in the interest of peace to allow some certain facts which some people think in their own arguments may be there.”

Vincent Ufuoma is a reporter with The ICIR. He is a lover of God, truth, knowledge and justice.

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