The Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) has taken over an asset belonging to Safequip Nigeria Limited over an indebtedness of over N470m.
This followed an order by Justice O.O Oguntoyinbo of the Federal High Court in Lagos.
Justice Oguntoyinbo gave the order on March 23, 2020, at the peak of the dreaded Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic granting AMCON absolute and exclusive possession of the property situate at No. 20 Babatunde Jose Street, in Victoria Island area of Lagos State.
In the other asset takeover, Justice A.M Liman, riding on the order of Justice I.N Buba of the Federal High Court Lagos, also gave an order granting AMCON the possession of seven properties belonging to R.C. Omeaku & Sons Limited including commercial property situated at Egbeada, KM 4 Orlu Road; property at 14, Okigwe Road; 175 Tetlow Road; 2, Douglas Road, 13, Royce Road; and 2, Ogugba Street, all in Owerri, the Imo State capital.
AMCON at the weekend took effective possession of all the properties as ordered by the high court ruling.
The company in question had failed to settle its indebtedness of almost N340m owed to the Corporation, which had been a subject of litigation for some time.
Head Corporate Communications Department of AMCON, Mr. Jude Nwauzor said the Corporation has deployed security agencies at the different locations to ensure that the assets are secured.
The AMCON spokesperson also hinted that the takeover was just a glimpse of the many heavy enforcement that would follow in the coming months given the amended AMCON Act 2019 that was signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari last year, which provides AMCON with additional powers in its enforcement activities.
The case of Safequip Nigeria Limited has been protracted because the loan was purchased from First City Monument Bank (FCMB) during the second phase of Eligible Bank Asset (EBA) purchases carried out by the Corporation in its relatively early days. On the other hand, the portfolio of R.C Omeaku & Sons Limited were purchased during both the first and second phase of EBA purchase from Union Bank Plc and Diamond Bank Plc respectively.
AMCON management said it had tried to explore all known peaceful means of resolution of such debts and the Corporation offered both companies and their promoters ample timeline and all sorts of support that would enable them repay the huge debt to no avail.
It said, “the obligors remained recalcitrant and unwilling to repay their debt to AMCON, which led to both cases ending up in court and the eventual order in favour of AMCON.”