In a bid to recover an alleged debt of N68.1million, the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) has dragged Mojibola Oluwole Sanni before a Federal High Court in Lagos.
Mojibola Oluwole Sanni was a former adviser to a past Governor of Ogun State on Economic Planning and Development. Also joined as a co-defendant in a debt recovery suit by AMCON is a limited liability company Green Courts Limited.
Our correspondent was unable to reach AMCON spokesperson Mr Jude Nwauzor on phone for comments before the story went to bed. But AMCON Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Mallam Ahmed Kuru, had repeatedly stated that with the amended AMCON Act, which was signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari, all recalcitrant obligors of AMCON would not be spared in the renewed recovery drive of AMCON.
However, in a statement of claim filed before the court by an Ibadan-based legal practitioner, Barrister Oluwole Olukole on behalf of AMCON, the debt recovery agency alleged thus: Green Courts Limited is a company in brand marketing and distribution, with an office at 33 Issa Williams Street, Oke Arin Lagos, whilst Mojibola Oluwole Sanni is the Managing Director and alter ego of the company. He is also the sole signatory to the accounts of the company.
The Green Courts company was a customer of defunct Intercontinental Bank Plc and operated accounts with the bank at the Oke Arin branch, Lagos. Sometime in 2002 and 2003, the company through the 2- defendant applied for several credit facilities of =N=1,000,000, = N=1,500,000 and later =N=2,500,000 from Intercontinental Bank Plc to finance the working capital requirements of their businesses. Consequently, Intercontinental Bank Plc offered the defendants the aforesaid credit facilities.
The first three facilities were granted for 30 days while the last was for 45 days. The bank disbursed the monies requested and it was paid into the company’s account. The defendants used the money for the purposes for which it was granted. After the disbursement of the facilities to the defendants, the defendants consistently failed to repay the debt as at when due and the same kept accumulating interest and thereafter became a bad debt.
By 2011, the outstanding balance on the company’s account had degenerated to a non-performing loan of -N-31,275, 723 (Thirty-one Million Two Hundred and Seventy-Five Thousand, Seven Hundred and Ninety-Three Naira only). The continuous refusal of the Company to liquidate its indebtedness to the bank occasioned great hardship for the bank which led to the AMCON taking over the non-performing facilities granted to the company from the bank.
Under its powers under the AMCON Act 2010 (as amended), AMCON purchased the company’s outstanding indebtedness arising from the facility granted to it by Intercontinental Bank Plc. Consequent to the above, all rights including but not limited to the right to institute an action in respect of any indebtedness were assigned to AMCON by the Bank.
The Defendants were alleged to have failed neglected and/or refused to settle the outstanding indebtedness of the defendants to date despite repeated demands. The indebtedness has continued to grow at an interest rate of 15% per annum and will continue to grow until full liquidation of the outstanding indebtedness.
AMCON has incurred various substantial costs in its efforts to recover the indebtedness of the defendants by engagement and/or payment of various professional services/fees including but not limited to the institution of this legal action. As of the 31st of January,2019 the outstanding company indebtedness stood at N68,061,269.02.
AMCON further stated that the defendants have several properties, bank accounts deposits and shares of business entities operating in Nigeria to the detriment of paying his debt. AMCON avers that the Defendants have no defence to this suit whatsoever to the Claimant’s claim as the debt is wholly undisputed.
Whereof the Claimant claims against the Defendants jointly and severally is for:- The payment of the sum of N68,061,269.02 (Sixty Eight Million, Sixty One Thousand, Two Hundred and Sixty Nine Naira, Two Kobo Only)being the outstanding balance as of 31st January 2019 of the credit facilities granted by Intercontinental Bank Plc but were personally guaranteed by the other defendant, but which the Defendants have refused to pay despite repeated demands.
The sum of 15% interest on the said sum from the 1st of February 2019 until the said sum is finally liquidated. Cost of this action. However, in a preliminary objection filed before the court, the defendants are challenging the jurisdiction of the court on the ground that the case is statute-barred and is an abuse of the court process.