Published On: Wed, May 22nd, 2019

10 months after, ICPC files defence in N1bn suit

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By Vivian Okejeme Abuja

The Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) has filed processes in defence to a suit, levelled against it by Pinnacle Communications Ltd (PCL) 10 months after it was instituted.
Before the federal high court, Abuja, PCL had in July 2018, dragged the ICPC to court claiming N1billion against the anti graft agency for unlawfully withholding its money domicile in Zenith bank without a valid court order.
When the matter came up for hearing yesterday, counsel to the plaintiff, Oluwole Olatunde informed the trial judge, Justice Taiwo Taiwo, that the matter was for hearing.
Responding, counsel to ICPC(1st defendant) E.A Shogunle told the court that he had filed his counter processes in opposition to the originating processes.
He added that he had also filed an application for extension of time to regularize his processes having filed out of time.
But Okey Ojukwu, who announced appearance for the 2nd defendant (Zenith Bank) informed the court that he had filed two applications on May 20, dated same day, in respect of the matter.
Ojukwu said the application was for extension of time to regularize the 2nd defendant’s processes.
The second application according to Ojukwu, was for an order striking out the name of 2nd defendant from the suit, which the plaintiff’s counsel said he would oppose.
Similarly, the 3rd defendant (AGF) through its lawyer, hinted the court that she would be filing processes.
After hearing all parties, Justice Taiwo adjourned the matter to June 27, for hearing of all pending applications.
By the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/779/18, dated 23rd July 2018, Pinnacle Communications is seeking “A declaration that the act of the 1st defendant in ordering the 3rd defendant to place a “post-no-debit” restrictions on the plaintiff’s account with the 3rd defendant without any court order and or any valid court order is ultra vires, unlawful, injurious, unconstitutional and a breach of the plaintiff’s right to its movable property.
“A declaration that the act of the 2nd defendant in placing a “post-no-debit” restrictions on the plaintiffs account number 1012875804 with the 3rd defendant without any court order and or any valid order is unlawful, injurious, unconstitutional and a breach of the plaintiff’s right to its movable property.
“A declaration that the failure of the 3rd defendant to right the wrongful act of the first defendant in ordering a “post no debit” restrictions on the plaintiff’s account with the 2nd defendant without a valid court order is unlawful, illegal, unconstitutional and a breach of the plaintiff’s right to its movable property.
“An order of perpetual injunction restraining the defendant from placing any restrictions on plaintiff’s account with the 2nd defendant without a valid and competent court order.
“An order of perpetual injunction restraining the 1st defendant from placing any form of restrictions on the plaintiff’s account with the 2nd defendant and or any other bank or financial institution in which the plaintiff maintains any account and or dealings, without a court order and or valid and competent court order.
“An order for the payment of the one billion naira as general, exemplary and punitive damages against the defendant for their unlawful and illegal act.

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