Alleged N5.5bn loan: Appeal Court strikes out Ecobank’s pending appeals

Alleged N5.5bn loan: Appeal Court strikes out Ecobank’s pending appeals

The Court of Appeal in Lagos on Tuesday struck out the three pending appeals filed by Ecobank against the ruling of a Federal High Court in Lagos over alleged indebtedness of Honeywell Plc to the bank.

The Appeal Court had in a judgement delivered on March 30 set aside the exparte orders by the Federal High Court in favour of Ecobank and described it as injudicious.

However, Ecobank filed a motions for injunctions pending appeal with a view to preventing Honeywell from taking full advantage of the judgement delivered in its (Honeywell’s) favour by the Appeal Court.

Honeywell also filed a counter affidavit in response to the motions for injunctions filed by Ecobank.

At the hearing of the appeal today, Ecobank lawyer Mr. O O Kushimo informed the court of a notice of withdrawal filed by the bank.

Also, lawyer to Honeywell Bode Olanipekun did not object to the withdrawal.

Consequently the appellate court presided over by Justice Sidi Bage struck out Ecobank’s motion for injunction pending appeal in suit no: CA/L/1247/2015, dated March 31, 2016, Ecobank’s motion for stay of proceedings in suit no: CA/L/1270/2015, dated April 1, 2016; and Ecobank’s motion for stay of proceedings in suit no: CA/L/65/2016, also dated April 1, 2016 respectively.

But the decision of the Court of Appeal to strike out all Ecobank’s applications is to the effect that Ecobank cannot restrict Honeywell’s related businesses.

It will be recalled that the Federal High Court of Lagos, through a judgement by Justice Jude Dagat, delivered yesterday 27th June, 2016, also struck out Ecobank’s petitions against Honeywell and its sister companies in a related matter.

Justice Dagat noted that a court faced with winding up application, must first determine if the petition was brought in good faith.

Read also: How Ecobank staff transferred depositors’N11m to son’s account

The judge stated that Ecobank was aware that Honeywell had challenged the alleged debt, and instituted a suit before a sister court presided over by Justice Mohammed Idris, who ruled that parties should maintain status quo antenna bellum.

The court held that despite these orders, Ecobank started its forum shopping by filing winding up petitions against Honeywell.

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