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Tuesday, December 19, 2017

N10bn fine: Innoson accuses GTB of using EFCC against its chairman

The officials of the Economicand Financial Commission (EFCC) may have become tools in the hands of Guaranty Trust Bank (GTBank) as it allegedly abducted the founding chairman of the Innoson Motors, Chief Innocent Chukwuma from his Enugu State residence on the orders of GTBank, reports ITRealms.

Information reaching our newsroom showed that some of the allegations attributed the 'common criminal abduction’ style to the Presidency.

While others linked it up with unending business transaction with GTBank that went awry, but left over N10bn fine against GTBank.

Our sources also said Innocent Chukwuma was allegedly arrested and brought to Lagos on the orders of GTBank, who of late has developed keen interest in the motor business of Innoson.

Yet others posited, the alleged commando arrest orchestrated due to the recent feat of the motor manufacturing company which manufactured some products for the Nigeria Army and Airforce specifically, which hitherto were imported.

Further, industry observers alleged that GTBank may be using every available means to undermine Innoson, so that it will not pay series of fines awarded against the bank in a multiple suits.

However, the Public Relations and Media Assistant to Innoson Group, Mr. Cornel Osigwe, had in efforts to set the records straight, recently informed that Guaranty Trust Bank PLC (GTB) alleged the imposition of excess and unlawful charges running into Billions of Naira on Innoson Nigeria Limited’s current account with it.

Equally, he said, GTB fraudulently appropriated these Billions of Naira from Innoson’s account, which led to the suit No: FHC/AWK/CS/139/2012 against GTB and therein got judgment in excess of N4.7Billion against GTB. GTB appealed against the judgment to the Court of Appeal, vide, Appeal No: CA/E/288/2013. There, the Court of Appeal ordered GTB to pay over N6Billion being the judgment with the accrued interest.

According to him, in a separate case, suit No: FHC/L/CS/603/2006, the Federal High Court ordered GTB to pay over N2.4Billion to Innoson, which GTBank also appealed on No: CA/I/258/2011 which Court of Appeal dismissed and ordered GTB to pay the N2.4Billion to Innoson.

Finding no justifiable way of getting Innoson to abandon the aforesaid judgments, which as at today is over N10Billion given the post judgment interest, or to let it pay a lesser sum to Innoson, GTB instigated the Police to initiate a trumped up charge – Charge No: FHC/L/565c/2015 against Innoson Nig Ltd. This charge was filed on 21st December 2015.

ITRealms gathered that when the Inspector General of Police discovered that the charge is a trumped – a ruse – it withdrew the charge through its Notice of Withdrawal dated 17th February 2016 and adequately filed same in the court.

Afterwards, the Inspector General of Police urged the Court to strike out the charge but for some strange reasons the court adjourned the matter rather than strike it out. After this but before the next adjourned date, Mr. Diri – the former Director of Public Prosecution, Federal Republic of Nigeria – wrote a letter claiming that the Attorney General of the Federation had taken over the case.
ITRealms equally gathered that the said backdated letter was never initialed by the Registrar or any officer of the Court nor filed at the Court’s Registry as required by law and practice was rather smuggled into the case file. This letter coupled with other activities of Mr. Diri led to his being relieved of his post as the Director of Public Prosecution.
Osigwe pointed out that currently, the Inspector General of Police, whether former or present has not filed any new charge against Innoson Nigeria Ltd and its managing director and Mr. J. I. Ajakaye who apparently is acting without any authority is not a Police Officer.
The matter came up on Monday, 24th October 2016 for the presiding judge to recuse himself from presiding over the charge and for same to be struck out having been withdrawn. Mr. Ajakaye never and did not serve any charge on the counsel representing the defendants in the matter.
Osigwe explained, a charge is an originating process and can only be served on a defendant and not his lawyer.
Ozo Nweke Ozo/GEE
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