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4 Aug 2017

BREAKING: COURT FREEZES ALHAJI ABUBAKAR TSAV'S ACCOUNTS

By Jimin Geoffrey
A Makurdi High Court Judge, Justice Maurice Ikpambese, has ordered that all accounts of Alhaji Abubakar Tsav be frozen with immediate effect.

He gave the order while ruling on a Motion Exparte No. MHC/1616M/2017, dated 18th and filed 19th day of July, 2017.
Justice Ikpambese held that an earlier judgment of the court in respect of suit No. MHC/251/15, bordering on a libelous publication against the person of Mr Abrahams Kwaghngu, Senior Special Assistant to Governor Samuel Ortom on Special Duties.
The judge had ordered Alhaji Tsav to pay Mr Kwaghngu the sum of Ten Million Naira (N10,000,000) as damages caused him due to the publication.
The publication was made in Nigeria Pilot newspaper, published by Dom Communications LTD, wherein the defendant, Alhaji Tsav made injurious allegations against Mr. Kwaghngu.
The judge held that judgments of the courts are to be enforced and not to be swept under the carpet, citing Section 83 of the Sheriffs and Civil Process Act, 2004, which enjoins all garnishees who are stakeholders in the enforcement process to oblige in the interest of the rule of law.
The Garnishees include Zenith Bank PLC, First Bank of Nigeria PLC, Union Bank of Nigeria PLC, United Bank for Africa PLC, Keystone Bank LTD, Access Bank PLC, and Skye Bank PLC.
Others include Diamond Bank PLC, First City Monument Bank PLC, Guaranty Trust Bank PLC, Unity Bank PLC, Fidelity Bank PLC, Eco Bank Nigeria PLC, Stanbic IBTC Bank PLC as well as Heritage and Sterling Banks PLC.
Investigations indicate that Alhaji Tsav who is the Public Complaints Commissioner in Benue State could not withdraw money from his First Bank account from one of the branches of the bank in Abuja when he went there last Wednesday.
The Ruling:
This is a Motion Exparte No. MHC/1616M/2017 dated 18th day of July 2017 and filed on the 19th July, 2017 pursuant to Section 83 of the Sheriffs and Civil Process Act 2004 and under the inherent jurisdiction of this court praying the Honourable Court for the following:
a. A garnishee order nisi as in Form 26 of Sheriffs and Civil Process Act against the Garnishees herein attaching the sum of Ten Million Naira (N10,000,000.00) due and accruing to the judgment debtors/respondents in custody of the Garnishee.
b. An order restraining/prohibiting the Garnishees from paying out or transferring the monies due and accruing to the judgment debtors in their custody pending when the Garnishees can show cause why they can not be ordered to pay the said monies to the judgment creditor/applicant.
c. And for such further or other orders as the Honourable Court may deem fit to make in the circumstances of this case.
The application is supported by affidavit containing twelve (12) paragraphs, Exhibit "A" being judgment of this Court in Suit No. MHC/251/15 and an accompanied written address.
It is not in doubt that the application/judgment creditor got judgment in Exhibit "A" against the judgment debtors/respondents. Moreso, the judgment is yet to be enforced hence this application.
The judgement of the courts are to be enforced and not to be swept under the carpet hence Section 83 of the Sheriffs and Civil Process Act, 2004 enjoins all Garnishees who are stakeholders in this enforcement process to oblige in the interest of the rule of law. Even if the accounts are not disclosed, the Banks/Garnishees have the duty to comply by searching out the debtors' account (see Oceanic Bank PLC v. Playroom (2012) LPELR 1970 CCA.)
In the circumstance, the application is granted and garnishee nisi issued accordingly. The return date is 15/8/2017 for the Garnishee to show cause why an order absolute shall not be made. The prohibition/restraining order applies to the judgment sum only. The judgment debtors to be served.
An enrolled order of this court to be served on all the respondents/judgment debtors and Garnishees for compliance Order accordingly.
HON JUSTICE M A IKPAMBESE
JUDGE
31/17/2017
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