The Rivers High Court sitting in Port Harcourt has ordered substituted service on the immediate past Transport Minister Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi, in the nine-count of stealing, conspiracy and cheating brought against him by the Rivers Government.

The court also ruled that the Rivers All Progressives Congress (APC) Governorship Candidate, Tonye Cole, Dr. Chamberlain Peterside, Sir Augustine Wokocha, Sahara Energy Resources Limited, NG Powers-HPS Limited and Cenpropsaroten Management Limited, standing trial alongside Amaechi should be served through substituted means.

The State had instituted a criminal proceeding against the defendants alleging among others that Sahara Energy Resources Limited, owned by Cole and NG-Powers-HPS Limited between 2011 and 2012 with intent to cheat agreed to purchase from Rivers Government 70 percent equity held by the state in the power generation assets in the four turbines in the sum of $302,960,000USD.

The State said the companies actually took possession, management and control of said power generation assets upon payment of the initial sum of $274,563,599.59USD, but refused to pay the outstanding balance of $28,400,000USD due to the state.

The Presiding Judge, Justice David Gbassm, varied an order of substituted service he made on June 17 following a motion ex-parte filed by the Prosecutor, C.F. Amadi on June 20th.

Granting the prayers of the Prosecutor, Gbassm substituted ThisDay newspaper and Vanguard Newspaper with the Guardian Newspaper and The Nation Newspaper.

He granted the prosecution leave to serve the information and other processes in the criminal proceedings, charge number: PHC/1818/CR/2022 on all the defendants in the two newspapers.

“Order is also made deeming the publication of the information and other processes in these proceedings in the Guardian Newspaper and the Nation newspaper as good and proper service,” he said.

He adjourned the matter to July 12th for pleas.

A handy text for not only lawyers, arbitrators, and judges, but also as major reference material for industry players including architects, builders, civil and structural engineers, quantity surveyors, and project managers, among others.

Written By Ewuwuni Onnoghen-Theophilus (Mrs.), LL.M, MCIArb.

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