Obat N5bn Debt: Court Rules On Hotel Sale Application November 30 - THE DAILY CRUCIBLE



Friday, October 9, 2020

Obat N5bn Debt: Court Rules On Hotel Sale Application November 30

                     •Oba Akinruntan

From Jane Okafor, Abuja

A High Court sitting at the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, will on November 30 give its judgment  in respect of an application filed by Ecobank Plc seeking an order authorising it to sell an Abuja hotel.

The hotel, Febson Hotels & Malls, is located at Plot 2425, Herbert Macaulay Way, Abuja. It belongs to Obat Oil and Petroleum Limited.

Ecobank claimed in its suit filed on October 18, 2019 that it had reached an agreement with Obat Oil to sell the hotel, to clear the company’s N5bn debt.

Obat Oil is owned by a billionaire traditional ruler, the Olugbo of Ugbo Kingdom in Ilaje Local Government Area of Ondo State, Oba Obateru Fedrick Akinruntan.

Justice Hassan Babangida fixed the judgment date after parties to the suit had made their final submissions on Thursday.

Ecobank’s lawyer, Mr Kunle Ogunba, told  the court that the agreement between it and the firm to sell the hotel to offset the N5bn debt was adopted by the High Court of Lagos State as a consent judgment delivered on March 15, 2017.

He said the bank and Obat Oil also signed a memorandum of understanding on November 27, 2019 to give effect to the content of the letter.

He said further that the company reneged on its pledge  to sell the hotel or pay the N5bn debt as contained in both the November 16, 2019 letter and the November 27, 2019 MoU.

The letter of agreement and document bearing the MOU were presented in court as exhibits.

He urged the court to grant his client’s prayers and not allow itself to yield to the technical arguments canvassed by Obat’s legal team.

In his response, Obat’s counsel, Ojo, urged the court to dismiss the suit.

Justice Babangida fixed November 30 for judgment.

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