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Business owners protest alcohol ban in FCT

Owners of recreation centres have written to the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Muhammed Bello, to remind him that Nigeria is a democratic society and not an Islamic state.

The business owners also rejected plans by the minister to prohibit the sale of alcoholic beverages in parks and gardens in Abuja.

They demanded that the minister uphold the rule of law, call his aides to order, and stop enforcing the 7pm closure of parks and gardens in the nation’s capital city, Abuja.

The business owners made this known in a letter written through their lawyer, Ifeanyi Agu, and titled, ‘Re Suit No: CV/408/2008: Barrister (Mrs) Amanda Pam (Proprietor Suez Garden) & 60 Others -Plaintiffs Vs Hon Minister FCT Defendant, the group also described the enforcement of 6pm Closing Hour by FCTA-Action as Sub-Judice’.

The letter partly read, “As solicitors to the plaintiffs in the above-stated suit pending before the FCT High Court, we draw your attention to the threatened enforcement of 6 pm closing hour by the proprietor of gardens in the FCT by your Senior Special Assistant on Monitoring and Enforcement, Comrade Ikharo Attah, which action is sub-judice of the pending case before the court.

“Suffice it to say that we live in a Democratic society where rule of law prevails against personal desires and brigandage of public servants. The terms of settlements in the above matter have been ordered to be filed by the Honorable court after the parties agreed in terms and principles.”

Agu added, “Our clients received with the greatest shock the threatened enforcement by the SSA against the claimants. Sir as a Minister in the temple of justice, we appeal to you to use your good office to call the SSA to order more especially as the case is before a court of law and the parties have agreed in principles.

“That there was an issue of criminality in one of the gardens does not mean there will be criminality in all other gardens to warrant the enforcement of the regulation of closing by 6pm.”

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