The ongoing tension between Guaranty Trust Bank(GTB) and Innoson motors escalated earlier this week when the automobile company attempted to seal off one of GTB’s branches in Enugu.
According to TVC, some staff of GTB stopped the sealing of its branch on Ogui road in Enugu, claiming they have an order for stay of execution of the previous order by a federal high court.
The representative of the Counsel to Innoson Motors, discredited the motion on notice wielded by the bank personnel. He said the GTB management is standing on the way of the law, for barring the bailiff from carrying out a rightful order of the court Awka
One of the Bank officials who spoke with newsmen at the Ogui branch of the GTB, claimed that the bank has secured a motion on notice to stop further sealing of its branches.
The federal high court sitting in Awka had given an order for the execution of a Supreme Court judgment in favour of Innoson Motors against the GTBank.
Both Innoson and GTB have different interpretations of the judgement.
According to Innoson, the order allows the sealing of GTBank facilities if they failed to pay the judgment sum of N2.4 billion which has accrued to N8.7 billion.
However, GTB insists the judgement refers only to the account of the Nigerian Customs service board with it.
“It is important to state that the judgment allegedly in issue is in respect of garnishee proceedings against the account of the Nigerian Custom Service board domiciled with the bank and not against the bank as an entity, ” the Bank said in a statement issued earlier in the week
According to a Premium Times report in 2017, the Innoson-GTB conflict is a spin-off of the Innoson-Customs conflict. It started when Innoson alleged that its containers had been sold by the Nigerian Customs Services, which operates an account with GTB. The containers had motorcycle parts in them and the consignment has been given a concession on import duty by the government, which the NCS refused to honour. Innoson headed to court and in a 2014 judgement, the court ordered NCS to pay Innoson N2.5 billion naira.
GTB reportedly refused to release the money, apparently because there are unresolved issues over a loan it had given to Innoson. The ensuing court case lasted for years until the court recently ordered GTB to pay Innoson N8.7 billion.