The Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has fixed Tuesday to hear an application by businessman, Jimoh Ibrahim, seeking to set aside an interim order which authorised the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) to take over his properties over an alleged N69.4 billion debt.
Justice Rilwan Aikawa adjourned the case on Monday after hearing arguments from Mr Ibrahim’s counsel and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Niyi Akintola.
The judge had made the seizure order in a ruling on November 4 while AMCON announced on November 18 that it had effectively taken over 12 properties belonging to the businessman and his firms.
The properties include the NICON Investment Limited building (Plot 242, Muhammadu Buhari Way, Central Business District, Abuja), NICON Hotels Limited building (Plot 557, Port-Harcourt Crescent, off Gimbiya Street, Abuja), and the building of NICON Lekki Limited (No 5, Customs Street, Lagos).
AMCON’s action is against Ibrahim, NICON Investment Limited, and Global Fleet Oil and Gas Limited.
Displeased with the seizure of his assets, Ibrahim and his firms, through Akintola, approached the court with a motion on notice, seeking to discharge the interim seizure order.
They contended that the court made the seizure order in error because AMCON allegedly concealed material facts in its ex-parte application leading to the seizure order.
The applicants urged the court to set aside the order for “non-disclosure and misrepresentation of material facts.”
They also prayed the court to order AMCON to pay them N50 billion indemnity for their alleged “failure to conduct due diligence before obtaining the said order sought to be set aside and for misrepresentation and concealment of fact.”
Ibrahim and others described the move by AMCON leading to the seizure order as an abuse of court processes.
But AMCON, through its lawyer and SAN, Kemi Pinheiro, vehemently opposed the defendants’ motion on notice and prayed the court to dismiss same.
A lawyer in AMCON’s legal department, Imelda Raheem, said, “The plaintiff, at the time of obtaining the orders on the 4th day of November, 2020, made full and substantial disclosure of all material facts in relation to the subject matter of this suit.”