By Godwin Oritse
BHS international, the concessionaire of the Tafawa Balewa, TBS, the Bureau for Public Enterprise, BPE and the Infrastructure Concession and Regulatory Commission, ICRC yesterday commenced moves to re-negotiate the concession agreement of the square.
The concession agreement of the TBS was signed ten years ago but could not be executed because the Lagos State Government went to court to stop the lease or sale of the property claiming that the facility was on the land of the state and therefore should be given the right of first refusal.
Despite the intervention of various committees set up to resolve the matter, the state government has refused to settle out of court.
Speaking yesterday to Vanguard during a monitoring visit to the TBS complex concession project in Lagos, Acting Director General of the ICRC Engr Chidi Izuwah said that the re-negotiation was not out of place as the business environment has changed over the years.
Izuwah said that the cost of fund ten years ago as well as other business factors have also changed over time.
He explained that the Commission decided to look into the concession agreement of the TBS because it does not want it to go the way of the failed Lagos International Trade Fair Complex concession agreements.
He said: “From the reports we have received from the Tafawa Balewa Square Management Board, TBSMB and the BHS International, we have reasonable facts to conclude that the implementation of this concession just like the failed Lagos International Trade Fair Complex concession.
“We have decided to visit this project to assess the level of implementation, parties’ compliance with the terms and conditions of the contract agreements as well as carry out on- -the-spot assessment of the facility, review the project’s challenges and recommend possible action plans toward resolving them.”
Also speaking, Managing Director of BHS international, Otunba Olu Adenodi also said that his firm has started re-negotiating a new concession agreement.
“The concession when fully operational will consist of a 29 story floor twin office towers, three multi story car parks and a 21 floors four star hotel and a 15 floor residential apartment.
Others are five floor exhibition ground and boutique, rehabilitated west pavilion and reconstructed East pavilion, a first level main arena and two level underground car park,”he said.