Ecobank gets permission to serve Otudeko, Flour Mills counterclaim in debt recovery suit

Oba Otudeko

A Federal High Court in Lagos on Monday granted Ecobank leave to serve counterclaims against Otudeko, Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc and Honeywell Group Limited as additional defendants to the counterclaim by the bank pursuant to a judgement of the Supreme Court delivered on January 27, 2023.

Justice Yellim Bogoro gave the order in the suit following Ecobank’s application by its lawyer Kunle Ogunba.

The plaintiffs/respondents are Anchorage Leisures Limited, Siloam Global Limited and Honeywell Flour Mills Plc while Ecobank is the defendant/applicant.

The judge granted two out of the bank’s four prayers as contained in its motion on notice.

They include: “An order for extension of time and/or leave of the court for the defendant/applicant to file and serve its counterclaim to the suit; an order granting leave to the defendant/counter-claimant to join Mr Oba Otudeko; Honeywell Group Limited and Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc., as additional defendants to the counterclaim.”

Bode Olanipekun represented the plaintiffs while Taiwo Osipintan appeared for the applicant in a motion seeking to strike out some paragraphs of Ecobank’s preliminary objection.

Justice Bogoro adjourned till July 19 for the report of service.

The plaintiffs filed this suit against the bank after the Supreme Court judgement which affirmed the indebtedness of Honeywell companies to Ecobank.

The plaintiffs through Olanipekun also filed a motion dated February 28, 2023 seeking to restrain Ecobank from demanding payment of any sum in excess of the difference between N5.5 billion and N3.5 billion after the judgement of the Supreme Court in favour of the bank, which held that the plaintiffs must pay their debt to the bank in line with the contract documents executed by the parties.