Federal Ministry of Information, Abia State Division, has been given a one-week notice to vacate its office accommodation situated on Azikwe Road, Umuahia, for its alleged failure to pay its rent for two years.
The landlord of the property, through his lawyer, Mr. Adizua Okoroafor, served a quit notice dated August 31 on the ministry.
The landlord, according to a copy of the quit notice sighted by our correspondent in Umuahia on Tuesday, insisted that the ministry must pack out of the three-bedroomed apartment on September 11, 2017.
Southern City News gathered that the quit notice was backed by an order of the Umuahia North Magistrates’ Court, which authorised the landlord or his assignee to approach the court to seek an order to eject the ministry.
An official of the ministry, who confirmed the receipt of the quit notice to our correspondent on the condition of anonymity, said the rent of the office complex had not been paid since the current Minister for Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, took over the running of the ministry.
The source said, “Since Alhaji Lai Mohammed was appointed as the Minister of Information and Culture, he has not taken the welfare of the Ministry of Information seriously. He is using the money of the Ministry of Information to run the Ministry of Culture, but Culture is under Information.
“We have never seen such a situation where a minister will hide in the Ministry of Culture and abandon the Ministry of Information and that is why we are having this issue of non-payment of our rent. Our rent has not been paid for over two years and we are suffering it now.
“We don’t even know what comes next. Our landlord has threatened to eject us any moment from now, and he started a court action against us.
“Our staff members have been advised to take their personal belongings from the office because we may come to work one morning and find out that the office has been locked up.”