- Petroleum (Special) Trust Fund vs. I.F.M.S. Ltd.
- ₦ 200
Petroleum (Special) Trust Fund vs. I.F.M.S. Ltd.
PETROLEUM (SPECIAL) TRUST FUND
FACILITY MANAGEMENT SERVICES LIMITED
COURT OF APPEAL
( ABUJA DIVISION )
MUNTAKA-COOMASSIE, JCA ( Presided and
Read the Lead Judgment )
ZAINAB ADAMU BULKACHUWA, JCA
ALBERT GBADEBO ODUYEMI, JCA
15TH APRIL, 2002
CONSTITUTIONAL LAW - Fair hearing - Trial -
Denial of hearing Whether can be alleged by a party who fails to submit his
case for hearing
COURT - State High Court and Federal High
Court - Whether have concurrent jurisdiction on claims for damages, injunction
or specific performance
EVIDENCE - Unchallenged evidence - Decision
based thereon - Whether can be faulted
FAIR HEARING - Fair hearing - Breach of -
Whether can be raised by a party who fails to utilise opportunity of being
FAIR HEARING - Trial - Denial of hearing -
Whether can be alleged by a party who fails to submit his case for hearing
JUDGMENT AND ORDERS - Decision based on
unchallenged evidence of plaintiff - Whether can be faulted
JURISDICTION - Jurisdiction of court - State
High Court and Federal High Court - Whether have concurrent jurisdiction on
claims for damages, injunction or specific performance
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - Trial - Denial of
alleged by a party who failed to submit his case for hearing - Impropriety of
Whether the respondent discharged the burden of proof
placed on it to prove its claims before the lower court to entitle it to judgment.
Whether the trial High Court has jurisdiction to
determine this case. If the answer is in the positive, whether the
defendant/appellant was afforded the opportunity to be heard in the
circumstances of this case.
plaintiff/respondent sought N45,309,723.18k as money due for unpaid services
rendered; 10% interest on the said unpaid sum, indemnity, injunction and
damages against the defendant/appellant.
plaintiff/respondent testified through one Ahmed Abubakar that by a renewable
agreement, the plaintiff was to manage the facilities of the defendant at its
Head Office Complex consisting of 63 residential houses. The services to be
rendered include clearing, gardening, horticulture, hiring of generators,
airconditioners, electrical installations, mechanical plumbing, security
gadgets, structure and fabric, fittings and fixtures etc. Invoices for services
rendered were made every three months. After submission of the end of year
report, the defendant refused to renew the plaintiffâ€™s appointment. Consequent
upon which the plaintiff withdrew its staff from the defendantâ€™s premises.
Inspite of series of demand notices sent by the plaintiff to the defendant, the
defendant still refused to pay for the services rendered between January, 1999
and December, 1999.
adjourned the matter for cross-examination of the plaintiffâ€™s witness (at the
instance of the defendant) to 24/7/2000. On the said date neither the defendant
nor its counsel was in court but with explanation. The matter was further adjourned
to 1/8/2000 for defence. On the said date, inspite of being served with hearing
notice, both the defendant and its counsel were not in court.
The trial court gave judgment in favour of
the plaintiff based on the evidence before the court. It is against the said
judgment that the defendant/ appellant filed this appeal.