UPA (Utanian Press Agency)
Release: Thursday, July 26, 301 AP.

Savant Motors case to be "resolved publicly"

The full bench of the Federal High Court has agreed with opponents of the
out-of-court settlement negotiations in the Savant Motors case, calling on the
Government to "fight the case in the public arena".

The Savant Motors case had finally reached the highest court in the land --
aside from the Parliament and Constitutional Court -- with opponents of the
out-of-court settlement pleading with the full bench of the Federal High Court
to halt negotiations between the government and Mr Atosu Savante.

Atosu Savante was a 25% owner of Savant Engineering, which later became Savant
Motors, when his business partners allegedly forced him to sell his share of
the company to them, which they, in turn, gifted to Guwimithian nobility to
enhance the company's success. Mr Savante is now claiming compensation of
212 million shares, worth over Û2 billion in a company worth about Û16 billion.

While a Federal Court judge said there was "no legal basis for challenging the
negotiations", he warned the government not to act "as judge and defendant".
The full bench disagreed and ordered the government back to the court, saying
the truth of the matter had to be resolved in the court "publicly".

"There is too much at stake for the government to hide the result, and to make
judgements about the legality of the case", the judgement read. The government
must now return to the state court of Utani B'yan and fight Mr Savante's claim
before a judge.

Commentators called it "Judges protecting their turf", while the Attorney
General called it "an outrage", and is considering appealing to the
Constitutional Court. Appealing to the Parliament -- the highest court aside
from the Constitutional Court -- would fail: both the government-supporting
Burovians and Progressives say they want "an open account" of the case.

"It is a clear case of the government skirting the rules to achieve their
result, and avoiding public scrutiny in the process", said Burovian leader Max
Boornal. "We support their desire to see justice done, but they should do so in
full view of the voting public". An ironic statement coming from a party that
wants to replace democracy with a meritocratic autocracy.


©UPA, 301 AP.

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©Mike Ham, 2001. All rights reserved. No reproduction without, at least, tacit approval. ;-)