A Federal High Court in Lagos on Wednesday granted a telecommunication service provider — Etisalat Nigeria – an extension of time to regularise processes in a suit filed against it over alleged fraudulent promos.
Justice Mohammed Yunusa, had in his ruling on the motion filed by the defendant (Etisalat), granted the prayers of the defence counsel, Mrs. Jero Daniels.
The plaintiff, Mr. Pascal Ozioko, had in July, 2012, filed the suit seeking court’s order to compel Etisalat to publish the names of winners of the promos in the national dailies.
He also wants the court to award him N100 million as damages against the defendant for misrepresentation and loss suffered.
Etisalat, had in the lottery, planned to give out N500, 000 daily to participants.
Ozioko joined the National Lottery Regulatory Commission (NLRC) in the suit as the second defendant.
When the case came up for mention on Wednesday, counsel to Etisalat informed the court of a pending motion seeking an extension of time to regularise processes before it.
But counsel to the plaintiff, Mr. Chukwudi Nneke, expressed dissatisfaction with the frequent setbacks the suit had suffered.
Nneke, however, conceded to the prayers of the defendant for extension of time on the grounds that the defendant would pay N20, 000 as cost for “undue delay’’ of the suit.
Etisalat had entered its defence in the suit at the last adjournment on May 23.
It prayed the court to deem its processes as duly filed and served which was granted by the judge.
In the suit, the plaintiff is claiming the sum of N100 million against Etisalat as damages for allegedly misleading its subscribers in the lottery.
In his statement of claims, the plaintiff averred that in November 2011, he received several SMS from Etisalat advertising a lottery.
“Etisalat advertised to its subscribers that Range Rover jeeps were to be won monthly and a daily cash prize of N500, 000 if subscribers answered daily questions sent to them.
“Each text was to cost N100 and each correct answer attracted points to the subscriber to qualify him for the prize,” Ozioko said.
He said that Etisalat promised that subscribers with the highest points would win the prizes.
The plaintiff averred that he spent almost all his savings sending answers to the questions which eventually earned him 10 million points for which he received an SMS from Etisalat congratulating him for obtaining the highest point.
“That was all I received from the defendant. I wrote on several occasions to the headquarters of the company at Plot 19, Zone L, Banana Island, Ikoyi, to verify the authenticity of their promises, but all to no avail.”
The judge adjourned the case to Sept. 18.