By Ajibola Abayomi,
July 4, 2018.
Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Lagos State Council has finally sack the Management of Epega & Company, the caretaker managing the Union’s property tagged NUJ Light House at Victoria Island on Wednesday.
The Chairman of the Union, Dr Qasim Akinreti made the pronouncement during a meeting with the tenants.
The letter handed to the tenants signed by the chairman and the Secretary of Union, Mr Alfred Odifa stated thus: “The Nigeria Union of Journalists, Lagos State Council writes to inform you that the Council is hereby taking full charge of the Management of its property, NUJ Light House at 3/5 Adeyemo Alakija Street, Victoria Island, Lagos.
“On no account should any payment be made to Epega and Company account.”
However, the chairman was shocked to discover that the caretaker whose name is Opeyemi had secretly collected N8 million and another N1.9 million at different times since March from two of the tenants without any remittance to the Union’s account.
It would be recalled that the Audit report on the finances of the property in the last six years and the report of the Lagos NUJ Finance Committee had indicted the Epega & Company for defrauding the union up to the tune of N56 million and additional N26 million he paid into the salary account of the former chairman of the union, Mr Deji Elumoye.
on the recent discovery, Dr Akinreti said Lagos NUJ was on top of the situation as the Union’s lawyer had been instructed to perfect the tenancy agreement with the tenants and also take legal action against the Epega & Company.
“Our lawyer had been directed to write you (tenants) individually and state our position further to the letter we have giving to you today. He will do the needful. I must let you know that we have come to a point of no return with Epega & Company for betraying the trust we had in him for the past 35 years.
“He had been reported to the Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors and Estate Valuers and we shall also make him have his day before the court soon. We are going to address all the inadequacies in the building and appoint a liaison officer between the union and you the tenants.
“However I want to apologise for any inconvenience the services of the caretaker must have cost you. Please be rest assured of our commitment to fully oversee our property henceforth” said Dr Akinreti.