The Consumer Protection Council (CPC) has clarified that it did not participate in the case in which its Director General, Babatunde Irukera, secured a N17million Supreme Court judgment against Coca Cola Nigeria as a private legal practitioner.
CPC said even though Coca Cola is within its jurisdiction, the case was not about any such issue and the CPC neither contributed nor participated in the dispute or judicial process.
Irukera had participated in the judicial proceedings as a partner at SimmonsCooper Partners, Lagos, before he was appointed as the DG of CPC.
The subject of the litigation appears to be a private employment dispute between Coca Cola and Mrs. Titilayo Akisanya. The conflict was not about, or on account of a consumer issue or failure. There was no underlying complaint or apparent statutory jurisdiction of the CPC.
A national daily had on August 8, 2017 reported the recent judgment of the Supreme Court in suit No: SC/542/2013: Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited and two others & Mrs. Titilayo Akinsanya with a headline that suggested it was the CPC that secured the judicial victory against the firm.
A statement from Coca Cola reads, “We wish to clarify that the Supreme Court ruling was on the subject matter of the jurisdiction of the National Industrial Court over the dispute that arose between the parties. The substantive appeal against the award of N17 million by the National Industrial Court in favour of the claimant is still pending at the Appeal Court.”