The Federal High Court on 20th February, 2023 held that Guaranty Trust Bank was in violation of the Consent Judgment entered by the Court on 17 December, 2019 and proceeded to set aside the purported execution carried out by Guaranty Trust Bank Plc on 1st February, 2023.
Ruling on an application filed by the Law Firms of Kanu Agabi & Associates, Wahab Shittu SAN and Bonajo Badejo & Co., on behalf of Stallion,- the Honourable Justice Allagoa of the Lagos Division of the Court, held that the execution, which was purportedly done, while the Court was yet to determine the timeline for the completion of the forensic audit pursuant to the consent Judgment of the Court, was wrongful and done with the intention to undermine the proceedings before the Court.
The Court of Appeal presided over by the Honourable Justices Daniel-Kalio, Sirajo and Banjoko, had previously delivered Judgment in favour of Stallion Nigeria against Guaranty Trust Bank Plc on 24 February, 2022 and set aside the Ruling of Honourable Justice Saidu in favour of GTB.
The Court held that GTB, could not rely on it’s own breach of the Judgment to act or levy execution against the assets of Stallion Nigeria. The Court held that the execution which was purportedly carried out on 1st February 2023 and subsequent steps by the Bank was not authorised by the Court.
The Court proceeded to set aside “any and every step taken by Guaranty Trust Bank Plc before, on or after 1 February 2023 in purported execution of the Consent Judgment of the Court dated 17 December 2019, in the light of the Judgment of the Court of Appeal delivered on 24 February 2022 in favour of Stallion Nigeria.”
Recall that Guaranty Trust Bank Plc had on 1st February, 2023 relying on the ex-parte order granted by Honourable Justice Saidu on 2nd December 2019, which had expired, and the subsequent consent Judgment, which GTB had breached and violated, tried to illegally enter one of Stallion’s properties in Victoria Island, Lagos.
Stallion Nigeria in its application, which was granted by the Court had contended that the preliminary KPMG forensic audit report had established that GTB overcharged Stallion, in excess, fraudulent and illegal charges of N4,693,625,637.49. GTB accepted this finding by the auditors.
Stallion Nigeria contends that it is not owing GTB any longer and that on the contrary, it is on record that it has paid more than what was outstanding to GTB by N6,423,700,000, a fact GTB is fully aware of but continues to violate its own agreement, the court orders, and Judgment of the Courts.