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Second Niger Bridge: Host communities drag builders to court for N2.5b damages



COMMUNITIES in Ogbaru Local Council of Anambra State have dragged the construction firm, Julius Berger to court.

  The company is to appear before the Federal High Court in Awka, for allegedly violating Environmental Impact Assessment rule in the construction of the second Niger Bridge.

Ogbaru people are seeking N2.5 billion as damages for the alleged environmental and health hazards activities of the company in the construction of the bridge. They Also joined the Federal Ministry of Works and B and Q Dredging as defendants in the suit.

The plaintiff claimed that more than 160 buildings from 15 communities in the Ogbaru Council Area on the coastal line of the River Niger had been adversely affected by the ongoing construction, which passed through Asaba to Ogbaru and stretched to Obosi.

The community claimed that the activities of the construction company had polluted River Niger, their only source of water supply, with attendant negative impact on aquatic and domestic lives.

They sought a court order to compel the defendants to recognise, deal and negotiate all terms and conditions of works with the Ogbaru Local Government Area Chairman in respect of the project being constructed.

Both the defendants and their counsels were absent in court when the matter was called up on Tuesday, for hearing before Justice I.B. Gafai and was adjourned to September 29, 2020.

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