A 38-year-old tenant, Genesis Genius, yesterday, told a Masaka chief magistrate’s court in Nasarawa State, that his landlord, Manzo Hassan, owes him for the beer he drank in his bar.
Genius, a resident of Masaka, was taken to court by Hassan for owing him N120,000 arrears in rent.
He agreed to pay the arrears, but insisted that his landlord should pay him his beer money first so he can add to it and pay his rent.
According to Genius, “my landlord always comes to my beer parlour to drink. Afterwards, he will not pay me. I am sure he is using it to replace the money I owe him.
“He has been doing it; the money he owes me amounts to a huge sum. He should pay me, so that I can pay him as well.”
The defendant told the court that his landlord has locked up the beer parlour, adding that he even chased his salesgirls and barmen away.
Hassan, in his response, told the court that he drank beer in his tenant’s beer parlour and deliberately refused to pay because of the rent arrears.
He said: “As I discovered that he was not making efforts to pay me my money, I started drinking beer on credit in his beer parlour to cover up the money he owes.
“I have not taken up to the amount he owes me. If that is the case, he should deduct the beer money from the rent arrears and pay me my balance.”
The magistrate, Mr. Victor Manga, in his ruling, told the landlord to do checks and balances with his tenant, since he did not object to the allegation.
Manga added jokingly that probably his tenant was giving him beer to replace the rent arrears. He asked the court’s bailiff, Sule Ishaku, to supervise the discussion between the landlord and the tenant in sorting out their disputes.
The magistrate ordered the landlord to unlock the beer parlour, stressing that he has no right to lock up the place.
He gave the tenant one month to vacate the place after the checks and balances. After the checks, it was revealed that the landlord drank beer worth N45,000.