Court Directs Polaris Bank, Ecobank to Pay Judgment Creditor N6.6m – Polaris Bank and another bank, Ecobank Nigeria Limited, have been directed to pay the sum of N6.6 million to a judgement creditor, Mr Henry Onovwiemore within 30 days.
This order was given by the presiding judge of the Awka Judicial Division of the National Industrial Court (NIC), Justice John Targema. The two lenders are to pay N6.4 million garnishee and N200,000 as costs of the action.
Mr Onovwiemore had sought an order nisi attaching the sum of N6.4 million being the salary and accrued interest from January 1, 2019, to June 30, 2020, against the judgment debtor in his favour by virtue of the judgment of the court delivered on November 10, 2015, as the judgment debtor failed, refused and neglected to comply with (or obey) the judgment; and the cost of N200,000 for the garnishee proceedings.
On October 22, 2020, the court granted the order nisi against Ecobank Nigeria Limited, Zenith Bank Plc, and Polaris Bank Limited as the garnishees asking them to show cause why the order nisi should not be made absolute and they responded in affirmative that there exist sufficient funds in the accounts belonging to the judgment debtor to meet the judgment debt.
In defence, the judgment debtor’s, Delta State University (DELSU), sought an order to set aside the garnishee order because the application might result in a serious miscarriage of justice and the court has no jurisdiction to do so on basis of an error on the service of the order nisi on the judgment debtor/applicant.
The counsel to the university, M.I. Osogbue, contended that the six years statutory period for the enforcement of the judgment by the judgment creditor against the judgment debtor expired on November 10, 2021, and, therefore, the entire judgment or any portion therefore that has not been enforced before now remains unenforceable; and urged the court to dismiss the application.
In response, the counsel to the judgment creditor, Bamidele Uche Igbinedion, submitted that the school was not disputing its indebtedness to his client, urging the court to grant the relief sought.
Delivering the judgment, Justice Targema dismissed the claim by DELSU and held that personal service on the university has been established and acknowledged as required by law, and the subsequent actions of counsel representing the judgment debtor have conferred validity on the proceedings.
The judge found the application of the judgment creditor for the order nisi of October 22, 2020, to be made absolute meritorious.