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Planned sale of banks: Shareholders ask court to stop Sanusi, CBN

By Ikechukwu NNOCHIRI
BUJA— Shareholders of the four troubled banks earmarked for sale by the governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, Dr Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, have gone before a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, asking it to stop the apex bank from going ahead with the plan.

The plaintiffs who filed their suit under the aegis of the Registered Trustees of the Proactive Shareholders Association of Nigeria, is praying the high court to further make an order of interlocutory injunction, restraining both Sanusi and the CBN, listed as the 1st and 2nd defendants respectively, their servants, agents and privies, from inviting bidders to buy over the four banks until the matter is determined by the court.

They specifically urged the high court to forbid him from making pronouncements on the sales bid or issuing statements capable of prejudicing their suit.

The four banks penciled down for sale by the apex bank boss were the Union Bank Plc, Oceanic Bank Plc, Intercontinental Bank Plc and Afribank Plc.

However, the aggrieved shareholders in a 28-paragraph affidavit they affixed in support of the suit, pleaded the court to determine whether  Sanusi and the apex bank, have the statutory powers to sell off the four banks in the way and manner they had planned, asking the court to go ahead and sanction the defendants for allegedly intensifying moves to dispose the four financial institutions despite a subsisting legal action in opposition to the plan.

They maintained that “the rights of the shareholders are in danger”, if the banks are allowed to go on sale as proposed by the CBN governor, adding that it would jeopardize the business and investments the already have in the banks.

Hearing on the matter has been fixed for September 23.


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