AMCON seizes two Chinese steel firms over N3.6bn debt …Freezes Gen. Garba’s bank accounts
A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has ordered the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria AMCON to take over Bao Yao Futurlex Iron & Steel Company Limited located within the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja and Bao Yao Huan Jian Iron & Steel in Calabar, the Cross River State capital over N3.6billion debt.
This development is coming less than two weeks after the corporation raised the alarm that some of its chronic debtors are Ministers and members of the National Assembly, which prompted the Federal Government to constitute a debt recovery committee headed by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo with membership drawn from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission EFCC and the Independent Crimes and other related Offence Commission ICPC.
Justice Binta Nyako, who made the order, mandated AMCON to take over all the assets of Bao Yao Huan Jian Iron & Steel Company Limited promoted by one Mr. Shen Yaozhang and General Idris Garba retired over a staggering indebtedness of over N3.6billion.
In compliance with the order, AMCON through its Receiver Manager, Mr. Robert Ohuoba, who also received protective orders from the court, has taken possession of Bao Yao Futurlex Iron & Steel Company Limited, Abuja and Bao Yao Huan Jian Iron & Steel, Calabar. The assets, which are now under AMCON, include Bao Yao Futurlex Iron & Steel Company Limited, Abuja as well as Bao Yao Huan Jian Iron & Steel Company Limited, Calabar belonging to the obligors. The court also ordered the freezing of all accounts of the companies in any financial institution in the name or belonging to the defendants, who include Bao Yao Futurlex Iron & Steel Company Limited; Bao Yao Huan Jian Iron & Steel Company Limited, Mr. Shen Yaozhang, Mr Ji Yunfeng and Gen. Idris Garba (Rtd.) and all financial institutions served with the order.
The court also granted AMCON possessory order over all that pieces of land consisting of buildings/factory and situated at Esuk Utan Village, Calabar, Cross River State, more particularly described as Plot A23 – A30, Calabar Export Processing Zone; All those chattels consisting of five Oil Tank Barges and seven Tug Boats etc.; as well as all pieces of land consisting of an acre and situated at Kaduna in the Kaduna Local Government Area, more particularly described as Plot No. 13, Idoma Close, among others assets.
Justice Nyako has also approved AMCON’s appointment of Mr. Robert Ohuoba, as Receiver over the business and stock in trade and over all fixed and floating assets of both Bao Yao Futurlex Iron & Steel Company Limited and Bao Yao Huan Jian Iron & Steel Company Limited wherever they may be found within the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court.
The Court also directed the Inspector-General of Police and the Commissioner of Police, in all the states of the federation to assist and protect the Bailiffs of the Federal High Court and the Receiver, Mr. Robert Ohuoba to carry out the takeover.
Confirming that AMCON has already taken over the assets/property as directed by the court, Head, Corporate Communications of the corporation, Jude Nwauzor, said, “We saw it coming because the said debt is long overdue. Like we have always said, going to court with obligors is usually the last resort for us as a corporation. Whenever you see us take over company as is the case in this instance, it means we must have patiently tried to resolve the matter without going to court.
“Taking over the firm as directed by the court is an indication that all efforts by AMCON to get the obligor to amicably repay the indebtedness have proved abortive. If you have exhausted all avenues of peaceful resolution, there is no other option available to the AMCON than to commence enforcement action against Bao Yao Futurlex Iron & Steel Company Limited as well as Bao Yao Huan Jian Iron & Steel Company Limited as directed, which is also provided under section 49-52 of the AMCON Act.”
Recall that AMCON had reiterated its commitment towards collaborating with various stakeholders including relevant government agencies in the country to intensify its chase on recalcitrant obligors of the corporation to the tune of over N5trillion. Expectedly, it has continued to sustain its recovery efforts, which began last year when it strategically refocused its recovery activities in the direction of more of enforcements rather than mere moral persuasion.