Court Orders FG To Fix Prices Of Goods — ‘Flour, Salt, Milk’ Within Seven Days

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The Federal Government was on Wednesday ordered by the Federal High Court in Lagos to fix the prices of goods and petroleum products within seven days. 

Ambrose Lewis-Allagoa, the presiding judge, on Wednesday, ordered the federal government to fix the price of milk, flour, salt, sugar, bicycles, motorcycles, motor vehicles, and their spare parts.

Such petroleum products as diesel, petrol, and kerosene were also included.

The judge gave the order while delivering judgment in a suit filed by Femi Falana, a human rights lawyer.

The price control board and Attorney-General of the Federation were the first and second defendants, respectively in the case.

In an affidavit, Falana said the price control board, which was established by the Price Control Act, is saddled with the responsibility to fix the prices of goods, stabilise the general price level, prevent hoarding of goods, and protect customers from exorbitant prices, among others.

Falana asked the court to determine whether, under section 4 of the Price Control Act, the first respondent was carrying out its duty to impose a price on the goods specified in the first schedule of the Act.

The goods listed in the first schedule of the act are bicycles and spare parts, flour, matches, milk, motorcycles and spare parts, motor vehicles and spare parts, petroleum products, salt, and sugar.

Read the suit: “A declaration that by virtue of Section 4 of the Price Control Act Cap, the defendants are under a legal obligation to fix the prices of bicycles and spare parts; flour; matches; milk; motorcycles and spare parts; motor vehicles and spare parts; salt; sugar and petroleum products, including diesel, premium motor spirit, and kerosene.

“A declaration that the failure or refusal of the defendants to fix the prices of bicycles and spare parts; flour; matches; milk; motorcycles and spare parts; motor vehicles and spare parts; salt; sugar and petroleum products including diesel, premium motor spirit, and kerosene is illegal as it offends the provision of Section 4 of the Price Control Act,  Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.

“An order directing the defendants to fix the prices of bicycles and spare parts; flour; matches; milk; motorcycles and spare parts; motor vehicles and spare parts; salt; sugar and petroleum products, including diesel, premium motor spirit, and kerosene, not later than 7 days after the delivery of the judgment of this Honourable Court”.

At the resumption of the hearing on Wednesday, Falana told the court that the motion was anchored on section 4(1) of the Price Control Act 2004.

The senior advocate of Nigeria (SAN) said the defendants had been served the notice since May 2023 but refused and failed to file any response.

He urged the court to grant all the reliefs sought since there was no counter-response.

In the ruling, Lewis-Allagoa granted all the reliefs sought in the motion.

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