An estate subscriber, Ronke Enitan, has accused a developer and a property company of allegedly defrauding her to the tune of N5m.
According to her, the N5m was a part payment for a four-bedroom duplex with boys’ quarters advertised for N32.5m at the Discovery Court 2 Estate in the Isheri North area of Ogun State.
The land where the estate is located is said to be owned by Pretoria Atlantic Properties Limited, which outsourced the development of the property to Agile P3 Limited.Newsmen gathered that a marketer, Alfred Oguh, sold the project idea to Enitan, who agreed to purchase one of the duplexes through an instalment payment plan.
After Enitan issued six cheques for amounts totalling N5m in the name of Pretoria Atlantic Properties Limited for the duplex, it was learnt that the former Lagos State civil servant encountered some difficulties that affected her finances, which made it difficult for her to meet up with the payment plan.The 64-year-old told newsmen that she notified Pretoria Atlantic of her inability to continue with the project and asked that the N5m be returned.
“But the firm refused to give me my money. I wrote a letter to the company, but it refused to respond. When my lawyer wrote, it responded and claimed that it was going through a crisis and that the matter was in court. The company said the case would soon be resolved and my money refunded.
“I want the government and relevant authorities to assist me to get the N5m back before we will talk about the interest that must have accrued on the money over time. Pretoria Atlantic Properties Limited offered me a piece of land in place of my money, but I rejected it because I never requested to buy land.
“It was a house I wanted to buy and since I could not continue paying, the parties involved in the project should give me a refund. And if they have land, they should sell it and give me my money. All I want is my money, because life has been tough for me,” she added.When newsmen visited Pretoria Atlantic Properties Limited’s office, the Administration Manager, Demola Adeleke, said the Discovery Court project was affected by a disagreement between the firm and Agile P3 Limited, adding that the matter was in court.
Adeleke alleged that a joint account was opened for the project, but the partner company opened a separate account and diverted clients’ funds into it, but when the others discovered this, the agreement was terminated.
He said, “We own the land, but gave it out to Agile P3 Limited for development. Initially, we had a joint account for the project, but after some months, Agile P3 set up an account, where they directed money into without our knowledge.
“So, cheques were issued in favour of Agile P3 Limited from then. It was later that we discovered that Agile P3 was doing a lot of damage to us. We then decided to terminate the agreement and sued the firm.
“It was after that that Enitan came with a letter that she wanted her money to be refunded. There was no development on the site and all the people that had paid were complaining. So, we demanded the number of people who had paid and were given allocations and the documents provided showed that Agile P3 had received over N283m for the Discovery Court project.
“When we told its representatives to account for what was collected from the clients, what they sent did not correspond with the development on the site, as the buildings were nowhere near completion.
“So, the challenge is that people like Enitan want us to pay. When two parties receive money and one party reneges on the agreement and is not willing to pay anything, how will the other person pay? Are we to pay for what the developer has collected?”
When contacted, Managing Partner, Agile P3 Limited, Olumide Fashina, directed our correspondent to his counsel, Olusegun Harrison, for a reaction.
Harrison, however, refuted the claim that Agile P3 Limited opened a separate account into which subscribers deposited money.
He said, “Agile P3 Limited did not open any separate account into which any subscriber’s money was paid, neither was any fund diverted as falsely alleged. More importantly, as stated in your mail under reference, Mrs Ronke Enitan paid the said N5m into the bank account of Pretoria Atlantic Properties Limited (the land owner) and not to Agile P3 Limited (the developer). The said funds paid into the bank account of Pretoria Atlantic Properties Limited was before Agile P3 Limited was engaged as a developer on the project.
“The said Ronke Enitan wrote a petition against my client, Agile P3 Limited sometime in 2016/2017 to the Lagos State Commissioner of Police at Ikeja GRA (Public Complaints Bureau). The company’s directors were invited and I represented them before the police. The police investigated the matter and also invited the Pretoria Atlantic Properties Limited. Ronke Enitan informed the police that she deposited the said N5m into Pretoria Atlantic Properties Limited account and my client, Agile P3 Limited, was exonerated.
“The involvement of my client as a developer was wrongly terminated by Pretoria Atlantic because they claimed the project was moving too slowly and not because of anything. My client sued Pretoria Atlantic Limited for wrongful termination of contract as the condition stipulated in their contract was not invoked prior to termination. The said matter is at the Sagamu High Court, Ogun State. Ronke Enitan should go after the company she paid her N5m since it was paid as a deposit for the land/building.”
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