Bi-Courtney, Babalakin not indebted to AMCON—Lawyer
ABUJA—Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria, AMCON, on Monday, released the list of debtors it claimed have failed to negotiate successfully with the corporation.
The list, which contains about 105 names, came months after the asset management company said it would need the support of other relevant agencies to ensure that obligors pay up their debts.
Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of AMCON, Ahmed Kuru, had in July promised to publish the list of delinquent debtors and directors who have failed to reach or refused to reach settlement resolution with the corporation.
Kuru said after failed negotiations, AMCON would name, shame and embark on take-over of properties of delinquent debtors.
Top on the list published by AMCON on Monday is Capital Oil and Gas Industries Limited owned by Ifeanyi Ubah, with its current exposure put at N115 billion.
It was followed by NICON Investments Limited owned by Jimoh Ibrahim, with N59 billion exposure; Bi-Courtney Limited owned by Wale Babalakin, with over N40 billion; Josephdam & Sons Limited, owned by the Kuteyi family with N39 billion exposure; and Tinapa Business Resort of Cross River State Government, with N30 billion exposure.
They are the biggest debtors on the list.
The name of a former Minister of Power, Barth Nnaji, appeared alongside others as main promoters of Geometric Power, which owes N29 billion. Mr Babalakin, once again, was named as the main promoter of Roygate Properties, which owes over N28 billion. Similarly, Shell Development Petroleum Company, promoted by Shell Staff, had its exposure put at N26 billion.
Former governor of Enugu State and Peoples Democratic Party Enugu East Senatorial candidate, Chimaroke Nnamani, also appeared on the list with a debt of N42 billion owed to AMCON under the names of Iorna Global Resources, Sammy Beth Interbiz Limited, Camden Resources Limited, Riverside Logistics Limited and Rainbownet Limited.
The Olofa of Offa, Gbadamosi Muftau, was also named with a debt of N12 billion under Zarm Stores Limited just as a former CEO of Intercontinental Bank, Erastus Akingbola, was named with over N10 billion exposure under the company, Octopus Trust Nigeria Limited.
Reacting to the list, Dr Wale Babalakin, said he was not indebted to AMCON.
‘BI Courtney, Babalakin not indebted to AMCON’
THE Resort Group Chairman, Dr Wale Babalakin, SAN, and his companies are not indebted to the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria, AMCON, their lawyer, Mr Olawale Akoni, SAN, has said.
In a statement, Akoni said it was libelous for AMCON to publish his clients’ names on its list of delinquent debtors.
Urging the media to beware of being misled and exposed to avoidable legal sanction for libel, Akoni explained that “on April 5, 2012, the Federal High Court, in FHC/ABJ/CS/50/2009 – Bi-Courtney Limited vs Attorney-General of the Federation, ordered that whatever debt was outstanding to any federal agency by Bi-Courtney and companies related to it should be deducted from the over N132 billion which the Federal Government owes Bi-Courtney.”
The lawyer further stated that if N49 billion (the sum allegedly owed by Bi-Courtney and companies associated with it) is subtracted from N132 billion, his clients still had a judgment credit of N83 billion, which the Federal Government is yet to pay.
“There was another court judgment on December 3, 2015, against the Federal Government in a case involving Resort International Limited (one of the companies associated with Bi-Courtney), in which the Federal Government was ordered to pay the firm N55 billion at an interest rate of 17 per cent per annum, an amount that is now in excess of N100 billion.”
“It was irresponsible of AMCON to publish the names of his clients on its list of debtors.” urging the media to beware of “this misguided behaviour” and disdain for the rule of law.