The Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company (IVM) last week said that its efforts to upgrade from 10,000 cars production capacity annually to 60,000 were being hampered by litigations against the company.
The company’s Head, Corporate Communications, Mr Cornel Osigwe, who made the disclosure at a news conference in Lagos, said the factory’s upgrading from manual to automated production was also affected.
Osigwe said that the recent charge filed by the Economic Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) at a Lagos High Court was distracting and affecting operations in the company.
According to him, even the workers are in fear of being harassed.
“There has been an advertorial by the EFFC declaring Dr Innocent Chukwuma, the Chairman of IVM wanted.
“That publication has maligned his image and reputation as well as put him in bad light as somebody who is a criminal. This is not so.
“The fact of the matter is that there has been an abuse of court process by the EFCC over a business disagreement between IVM and Guarantee Trust Bank which started in 2013,’’ he alleged.
“This same case instituted by the EFCC is still pending at the Federal High Court, Lagos and at the Court of Appeal, Lagos.
“Recently, the same EFCC filed a fresh charge of the same case and allegation at the Lagos High Court. This is clearly an abuse of court process by the EFCC.
“Innoson is contesting that the Lagos High court has no jurisdiction to entertain the suit and not afraid of arraignment or running away from the court.
“He is saying that he must be arraigned through due process of the law,’’ he said.
Osigwe said that IVM represented the hope, identity and story of Nigeria, as well as the die-hard spirit of Nigerians to make things happen.“’So, we want Nigerians to know the facts of the issue.’’
It will be recalled that Chukwuma is standing trial in a matter between his company and the EFFC.
He was arraigned alongside his company for allegedly forging documents to facilitate the clearing of some goods at the port.
Specifically, he was alleged to have forged documents purportedly emanating from GTB Bank.