As mood keeps to upward push over the contentious trouble among Ecobank Nigeria Limited and Honeywell Group over an alleged N5 billion debt, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr. Kunle Ogunba, has brushed off the placement of the Bankers Committee at the difficulty, pronouncing its ruling which absolved Honeywell of in addition debt duty to the financial institution is ineffective.
In an obvious reaction to a closing week’s record, which quoted a former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Lamido Sanusi Lamido, as pronouncing that the Bankers’ Committee ruling had resolved the difficulty, Ogunba, who’s the suggest to Ecobank, stated it changed into preposterous for all of us to ponder that a choice of a Banker’s Committee is advanced to a very last choice of the Supreme Court.
The senior legal professional argued that the Banker’s Committee isn’t always a courtroom docket, therefore it lacks the electricity to adjudicate over the be counted.
“Is the Banker’s Committee a courtroom docket? Even at that, why did Honeywell report an movement in courtroom docket after the so-known as selection of the banker’s courtroom docket? If it had received in its 8 years sojourn in all levels of our courts, wouldn’t it not nevertheless are looking for safe haven withinside the Banker’s Committee?” the eminent legal professional queried.
He in addition argued that Sanusi had a vested hobby withinside the dispute, having labored because the leader govt of First Bank at some point of a duration whilst Oba Otudeko held forth as chairman of the financial institution.
He stated: “I am of the taken into consideration opinion that the perspectives of His Royal Highness Emir Sanusi Lamido Sanusi circulated withinside the press have to were quoted out of context or outrightly misquoted considering it’s miles an intervention he ought now no longer to have ventured into.
“First, his profession trajectory which peaked as a Managing Director with Otudeko withinside the chair of First Bank from which vantage role he turned into appointed a CBN governor qualifies him as an interested/biased intervener!
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“Secondly, even though, he would possibly have a regulation degree, he isn’t a working towards attorney to my information and in that stead, one can not appropriately ponder a controversy of a choice of a Banker’s Committee, withinside the wake of a very last selection of the Supreme Court, the very best courtroom docket withinside the land while it’s miles taken into consideration that the Honeywell Group turned into the only who provoked the criminal tussle, which they misplaced through going to courtroom docket first,” he explained.
Sanusi had insisted that the Bankers’ Committee, appearing as a consensus-primarily based totally body, has the authority to make binding selections for banks.
He argued that the dispute among Ecobank Nigeria and Honeywell Group over the alleged N5 billion debt appears to were resolved as early as 2015, following the statement with the aid of using the Bankers’ Committee.
According to a record from the committee’s Ethics and Professionalism sub-committee, the settlement for Honeywell to pay Ecobank N3.five billion as a complete and very last agreement turned into deemed legitimate and must be honoured.
The count got here up while legal professionals to Ecobank wrote a letter to FBN Holdings Plc now no longer to simply accept the current acquisition of stocks via way of means of Honeywell Group Limited due to the latter’s alleged indebtedness to Ecobank.
And in reaction to a latest letter from Ecobank Nigeria, legal professionals representing Oba Otudeko clarified that the claims made approximately selections from the Supreme Court in case SC/CV/210/2021 on January 27, 2023, asserting the indebtedness in their patron or Honeywell Group Plc have been false.
They in addition clarified that the precise quantity of N13,507,052,417.ninety nine stated in Ecobank’s letter turned into now no longer a part of any courtroom docket choice or judgment in Nigeria or elsewhere.
The attorneys concluded that no courtroom docket order has provided this kind of sum as a debt owed via way of means of their clients, or any of the Honeywell companies, in favour of Ecobank.