Alleged Multi-Billion Debt: Ifeanyi Ubah Wants Court to Unfreeze Accounts

The Chief Executive Officer of Capital Oil and Gas Limited, Dr. Ifeanyi Ubah today urged a Lagos Federal High Court, to vacate its interim order made on April 13, 2016 against his oil and gas firm.

 

In the suit that occasioned the interim order, the petitioner, Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) had filed and obtained an expert order freezing Ubah’s Capital Oil and Gas’ account over alleged debt running into billions of Naira.

 

Ubah through his counsel, Michael Damiari, has also filed a notice of preliminary objection challenging the jurisdiction of the court to determine the case.

 

Also, Dr. Ubah also filed a respondents counter-affidavit in opposition to the petition dated April 5.

 

Today, counsel for the AMCON, Abubakar Mahmud (SAN) and Damiari engaged on heated argument on which of the applications to be taken first.

 

However, Justice Mohammed Idris, while ruling on the contention the  ruled that the motion challenging jurisdiction would be taken first.

 

Justice Idris noted that though the motion to vacate the order is imperative, the court is poised to determine jurisdiction before it can commence with further proceedings.

 

“The court is poised to determine jurisdiction before commencing with further proceedings. I know that the order will elapse in 14 days time, we shall come back at earlier date possible”, he said, fixing May 2 for that purpose with a proviso that it will come up on May 3, if May 2 happens to be a public holiday.

 

Dr. Ifeanyi Ubah in his motion to vacate the order, is asking the court to also stay the compliance by the AMCON and its managing director pending the hearing and determination of the substantive suit.

 

Ubah motion is supported with an affidavit of 98 paragraph deposed to by an executive director in Capital Oil and Gas Industries Limited, Nsikan Usoro.

 

In the affidavit, Ubah averred that he contested the size of the debt claimed by Union Bank against him.

 

He also averred that during the pendency of the suit, AMCON without regard to the pending action, bought the debt from Union Bank at a price in excess of actual debt claimed by the bank.

 

In case of Zenith Bank, the applicant stated that he had commenced negotiations of the debt and the Bank had already indicated a willingness to accept the sum of N6 billion in full and final settlement of the debt, but without reference to the applicant, the petitioner bought the debt at over twice the sum”, he averred.

 

He said the same applied to facilities provided to the applicant by FCMB, Aso Savings and Loans Limited and Skye Bank, adding that it remained the largest and most profitable Nigerian Petroleum industry down stream operator with assets of over N300billion, far in excess of its debts to a few banks and trade creditors. http://thestreetreporters.com/?p=3325&preview=true

About Paul Sanusi, Lagos

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