A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja granted relief to Jimoh Ibrahim by setting aside the interim order used by the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) to seize property belonging to Chairman/Chief Executive Officer, Global Fleet Group, over an alleged N69.4 billion debts. The order of relief followed an application by Jimoh Ibrahim, seeking a reversal of the interim order obtained by AMCON as he claimed that it was erroneously issued, considering that AMCON hid material facts in its ex-parte application. While setting aside the order, Justice Okon Abang, in the ruling, also vacated all consequential orders made earlier by the court on January 4, but differently constituted by Justice Rilwan Aikawa of a Federal High Court, Lagos.
It will be recalled that a Federal High Court in Lagos had on February 17, 2021, refused to vacate an interim order used by AMCON to seize property belonging to Jimoh Ibrahim. Also in November 2020, Justice Rilwan Aikawa of Federal High Court Lagos, had granted an interim order, allowing AMCON to seize properties and freeze bank accounts belonging to Jimoh Ibrahim, over a N69.4 billion debts. Some of the properties released to Ibrahim include; the building housing NICON Investment Limited at Plot 242, Muhammadu Buhari Way, Central Business District, Abuja; NICON Hotels Limited building at Plot 557, Port-Harcourt Crescent, off Gimbiya Street, Abuja; NICON Lekki Limited also at No. 5, Customs Street, Lagos; Abuja International Hotels Limited located at No. 3, Hospital Road, Lagos; Energy House located on No. 94, Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, Lagos; NICON Hotels at Plot 3, Road 3, Victoria Garden City, Lagos as well as the NICON Luxury Hotel’s Garki I, FCT, Abuja.
However, Jimoh Ibrahim urged the Federal High Court in Lagos to discharge an interim order obtained by AMCON taking over his assets. He said that AMCON is aware that they have a deposit of N86 billion or 172 million pounds with Union Bank and AMCON is aware that an application to collect the money from Union Bank is pending before an Ikeja High Court. All of these facts, Ibrahim said, were not disclosed to an innocent Federal High Court. Ibrahim, NICON Investment Ltd and Global Fleet Oil and Gas Ltd, had prayed the court to set aside the order for non-disclosure and misrepresentation of material facts and also prayed the court to order AMCON to pay N50 billion indemnity for alleged failure to conduct due diligence before obtaining the said order and for misrepresentation and concealment of fact. But Aikawa, in a almost 2-hour ruling, upheld the argument of AMCON’s counsel, Kemi Pinheiro, SAN, which insisted that AMCON made full and substantial disclosure of all material facts at the time of obtaining the orders on November 4, 2020.