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Thursday, April 24, 2014

Paid parking suspended in Abuja after court ruled against it.


Residents of Nigeria's Federal Capital territory, Abuja are overjoyed over the cancellation of the dreaded Park 'n' Pay policy. The widely criticized policy was introduced in 2012 by the Minister of the FCT Sen. Bala Mohammed. It saw motorists being forced to pay before parking in most areas of the city centre. 

Paying to park wasn't the only painful part for motorists, there was also the clamping of tyres......Yes! If a motorist parks in a Paid parking zone without paying he/she is sure to find his tyre clamped when he gets back and would have to pay the sum of N5000 to get it unclamped. 

There were  instances where the Park 'n' Pay attendants deliberately hide away when they see motorist, just so they can use the excuse that the motorist didnt pay the parking charge to clamp the tire. It was a frustrating policy.

After nearly 2 years of the policy, Sun Trust Saving and Loans Limited, sued the Minister of Federal Capital Territory, and two others, challenging the legality of the policy under which motorists paid for parking their cars in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

The plaintiff had sought for a declaration that the park and pay policy scheme was severe, illegal, and not in pursuant to any Act of the National Assembly. It also sought the refund of N20, 000 collected by the third defendant, and another N100 million in exemplary damages.

Delivering his judgment, Justice Peter Affen, held that though the ‘park and pay’ policy might be described as an “excellent policy,” it also lacked the backing of the law. In granting the reliefs sought by the plaintiff, the judge declared that the scheme was illegal, and null and void.

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So hurray!

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