- Firm Accuses Bank Of Sending Robbers After Them
A Lagos-based haulage company Ekili Investments Limited has written the Inspector General of Police detailing how Stanbic IBTC Bank allegedly stole its N200 million and sent armed thugs to forcefully seize its trucks.
According to the firm’s lawyers, Nnoli and Okoye, it had asked a Lagos High Court to determine its financial relationship with Stanbic IBTC over a N1,274,390,062 loan it took between 2007 and 2007 to buy 85 trucks.
Ekili’s auditors claim the company had at February 2014, paid Stanbic IBTC Bank N1,971,326,040 and another N206,360,701.46 in the name of charges which the Central Bank of Nigeria has since reportedly declared illegal.
Ekili has asked Stanbic IBTC to refund the N206,360,701.46 or face prosecution.
Rather than rely on the doctrine of lis pendis, said Ekili’s lawyers, Stanbic IBTC resorted to self-help by engaging the services of armed thugs to forcefully seize its client’s trucks.
In the letter dated 31st July 2014, the firm alleged that on 23rd July, 2014, Stanbic IBTC sent armed thugs to invade its premises and steal its trucks laden with products of Nigerian Breweries Plc.
The letter was entitled “Petition Against Detan Akinhanmi, Linus Ukanwoko and the Management of Stanbic IBTC Bank for Criminal Misappropriation of the sum of N206,360,701.46 and attempted Stealing of 110 Trucks in Possession of and Managed by Ekili Investment Limited.”
Ekili’s lawyers told the police boss that “we have received further information and instruction that the invasion of our client’s garage situate at Escoley Filling Station, Ama, Enugu State on the 23rd day of July, 2014, was in fact an act of robbery.
“The hoodlums that attacked the garage actually carried guns and machetes…and fired sporadically to ward off any resistance,” said the lawyers, explaining that on the said operation alone, Stanbic IBTC’s thugs “actually stole two fully laden trailers at gun-point.”
Ekili’s lawyers told the police boss that “the matter was incidented at the Nigeria Police Station, Ama, (and that) the DCO on duty actually interviewed the leaders of the looters,” however adding, “we do not know the extent of the investigation so far and whether any arrests were made.”
A top police officer, however, told Pointblanknews.com that the hoodlums may have received support from the Enugu State Commissioner of Police, Alhaji,Abubakar Mohammed a man he claimed had vested interest in the matter.
“The CP has exposed himself as a man who has been heavily compromised by Stanbic IBTC. The way he has been crying more than the bereaved in this purely civil matter between a bank and its customer shows that there is more than meets the eye” he offered.
The police source told Pointblanknews.com Thursday morning that the thugs for the umpteenth time invaded Ekili’s yard in Enugu, and forcefully drove off several trucks.
“This is sad. As we speak, hundreds of thugs are in the premises. They are looting cartons of beer and malt drinks in the thousands. They are beating up all the workers of the company who apparently are overwhelmed by the armed thugs,” he said.
On what the police are doing to save the situation, he retorted, “Which police? I’ve just told you that our CP is providing cover for the criminals and you are talking of the police. As things are we are helpless. The CP is involved, so what can we do?”
Attempts to get CP Mohammed comment on the matter met with no success as he failed to respond to our text messages and calls.
An top official of Stanbic IBTC contacted said he wasn’t authorised to speak on the matter. He pleaded not to quoted, and promised to get the “appropriate officers” give their side of the story.