Metro & Crime

Lawyer petitions Lottery Commission over unpaid N186m winnings

…as NBC asks court to vacate ex-parte order against energy drink

A Lagos lawyer, Victor Emerson, has petitioned the National Lottery Regulatory Commission (NLRC), urging it to probe unpaid sports bet winnings of over N186 million involving his clients.
In a petition dated February 24, 2021, he said his clients, Cephas Esemeka, Goodluck Solomon and Uloeze Odum won N186,554,545 after placing bets with Bet Bonanza but were not paid.
The trio had also on January 16, 2021, petitioned the Commission over the same issue with the NLRC acknowledging receipt of the petitions on February 17 and 24, 2021.
However, in a March 16 letter to the NLRC Director-General, Emerson stated that the Commission was yet to respond to the petition of February 24 several weeks after receiving it.
According to him, the agency’s delay in attending to the petition “lends credence to our clients’ suspicions that the Commission may have assumed a position on this issue to their detriment”.
He said: “We have no hesitation whatsoever in taking this matter outside the Commission where it appears the Commission is being deliberate in the dereliction of its statutory duties.”
The lawyer further urged the NLRC to “take the appropriate steps to ensure that our petition is given its due consideration as it is statutorily appointed to do.”
And in a related development, the Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC) Plc has asked Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke of a Federal High Court in Lagos to set aside an ex-parte injunction obtained by Rite Foods Ltd against the continued promotion of its Predator Energy drink in the Nigerian market.
NBC further asked the court to dismiss Rite Foods’ committal application brought against its Managing Director, Mr. Matthieu Seguin, for alleged disobedience to the interim order.
NBC’s lawyer, Oluseye Opesanwo (SAN) told the judge Thursday that Rite Foods’ applications were brought ‘malafide’ and were without merit as the suit lacked a firm ground to stand in law.
The silk further contended that the Predator logo had been in existence and in use in many markets outside of Nigeria even prior to the launch of Fearless by Rite Foods in the Nigerian market.

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