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Honeywell’s Judgement Claim is absurd and an Exercise in Futility – Ecobank



Eco Bank and Honeywell logos

Ecobank Nigeria says it remains committed to recovering the debts owed by Honeywell, emphasizing that the return of depositors’ funds is crucial for ensuring the continued support and growth of local businesses by the bank.

The bank also asserted that the judgement claim by Honeywell Flour Mills Plc is an exercise in futility as the bank would diligently pursue the appeal with the aim of overturning the judgment of the Federal High Court.

Ecobank Nigeria Limited has lodged an appeal against the ruling of the Federal High Court, Lagos, delivered by Hon. Justice M. Liman, in the N72 billion lawsuit brought against the bank by Honeywell Flour Mills Plc.

In its Notice of Appeal dated 19th July 2023, filed on the same date, Ecobank seeks to overturn the judgment delivered on 18th July 2023.

The bank is also seeking an Order from the Court of Appeal to uphold its Notice of Preliminary Objection, challenging the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court to preside over the matter.

Alternatively, Ecobank requests the Court of Appeal to dismiss Honeywell’s claim at the lower court, asserting that the evidence presented did not support the claim.

Alongside the Notice of Appeal, Ecobank filed a Motion on Notice to stay the execution of the lower court’s judgment and to prevent Honeywell or any party acting on their behalf from taking advantage of the ruling pending the appeal hearing.

The bank also seeks to restrain the Deputy Sheriff of the Federal High Court, bailiffs, and any other involved parties from enforcing the judgment.

The Bank filed several grounds of appeal, including, challenging the court’s jurisdiction to adjudicate on the matter seeing that the court lacked the power to entertain a claim for damages based on an undertaking made by the Bank despite the judgment of the Supreme Court, which confirmed Honeywell’s indebtedness to Ecobank and directed Honeywell to settle its obligations. Ecobank maintains that this judgment by the Supreme Court nullifies the foundation of Honeywell’s current suit.

In its third Ground of Appeal, Ecobank contends that the judgment was delivered outside the constitutionally prescribed period of 90 days, resulting in a miscarriage of justice against the bank.

The trial concluded on 9th March 2021, and written addresses were adopted on 16th March 2022, while the judgment was delivered on 18th July 2023, more than two years after the trial’s conclusion.

Ecobank argues that the prolonged delay affected the court’s impression of the trial, leading to a judgment that does not align with the weight of evidence presented.

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Lawyer denies Adebutu’s arraignment for vote buying in Ogun




Hon. Oladipupo Adebutu

Muyiwa Obanewa, Counsel to the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ogun state, Ladi Adebutu has dispelled reports that his client was arraigned before a state High Court in the state over alleged vote buying.

Obanewa insisted that Adebutu was yet to be served court documents regarding the case.

Obanewa disclosed this in an interview with journalists in Abeokuta, on Tuesday.

There were reports that Adebutu was arraigned in absentia alongside nine others over alleged vote buying during the March 18 governorship election in the state.

Upon an allegation raised by the state Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Yemi Sanusi, the federal government through the office of the Attorney general of the federation and minister for justice, charged the top politician and nine others to court.

But, Adebutu is yet to honour police invitation over the allegations has he is out of the country.

Speaking with journalists, Adebutu’s counsel said the case was ‘merely a political stunt’ which cannot stand the test of time.

“Only five of the 10 defendants were served and they appeared in court yesterday (Monday). Rotimi Jacob (SAN) was the counsel that came for the prosecution and appeared for the defendants.

“Their plea was taken and we applied for bail and the court granted them bail in very lenient terms to show that the charge is not a very serious one. The bail was granted in the sum of N100,000 and one surety. So that gives you an idea first of all that the charge has no leg to stand on.

“We applied and we took them out on bail that same yesterday and they are in their homes now. The case has been adjourned to September 26 for commencement of trial,” Obanewa said.

He added that, According to the electoral act, only the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, can sue an individual over matters of electoral offences.

His words, “The duty to investigate electoral matters is that of INEC and not the chairman of APC in Ogun State. We are waiting for them, let them come, and we will meet them in court. We are waiting for the APC chairman to even come and give evidence.

“INEC is not aware of it. If you look at the electoral act, only INEC can initiate criminal prosecutions involving electoral offences, not a party chairman, not an individual.”

When asked if Adebutu was arraigned in absentia, Obanewa said, “It is not true that Adebutu had been docked. As we speak he has not even been served, he is not even aware of it and until you are aware and served with a court process, you cannot be alleged to have evaded the court. He has to be served before he can be arraigned.

“He was not arraigned, his name merely appeared on the information sheet because he had not been served. Himself and four others have not been served and until he is served they cannot claim that he has avoided coming to court. Let them go and serve him, once he is served he will appear in court and then put in his own defence.”

The Counsel however, expressed their readiness for the commencement of the definite hearing of the matter.

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Top Gas Company, Greenville LNG Risks Another Multimillion Dollar Lawsuit




Greenville LNG Truck

Two years after it was slammed with a $9m claim for breaching contract by a US Court, Greenville LNG company is on the brink of another lawsuit in its supply dealings with Nigerian-based manufacturing giant, BUA Group.

Owned by Eddy Van Den Broeke, a Belgian cement magnate, Greenville is the pioneer Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) production and distribution company in Nigeria with three liquefaction trains and a total capacity to produce 2250 MT of LNG per day.

The company, which was incorporated in 2013, prides itself for producing and marketing Liquefied Natural Gas to customers across Nigeria since April 2019.

It should be noted that the company is a Nigerian subsidiary of the International Engineering & Construction (IEC), a Luxembourg-based construction company.

However, in 2018, there are reports of how Broeke was struggling to get his LNG project off the ground in Nigeria and also facing a $9m claim from his subcontractor Baker Hughes.

How it started

In 2014, IEC through Greenville LNG entered into an agreement with Baker Hughes Energy Services LLC, formerly known as GE Oil & Gas (GEOG), for the purchase and installation of two small-scale liquified natural gas plants in Rumuji, Rivers State, Nigeria.

According to the documents obtained by POLITICS NIGERIA, GEOG agreed to supply IEC with two small-scale liquified natural gas production plants — the first by June 24, 2015, and the second by September 24, 2015— for use at the Rumuji Site.

In exchange, IEC agreed to pay GEOG $95 million. Both parties also agreed on a payment schedule, which would require IEC to pay various percentages of the $95 million at specific milestones.

It was stated that the agreement would be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the state of New York.

Unfortunately, GEOG failed to deliver the gas plants by their contractual delivery deadlines and this stalled installation, commissioning, and start-up of the Plants.


On July 31, 2018, IEC filed a Notice of Demand for and Commencement of Arbitration under the Contracts on behalf of itself and Greenville.

IEC initially sought approximately $75 million in damages but its demand increased to $700 million by the end of the arbitration.

The $700m claims included the liquidated damages for delayed delivery and damages associated with the delayed entry into operation of the gas plants.

But GEOG also filed counterclaims against IEC for breach of the contracts, asking for damages up to $40.1 million.

In 2020, the American Tribunal gave its verdict, ordering IEC and Greenville to pay GEOG over $9.5m for breaching contracts.

The Tribunal held that IEC had breached the Equipment Contract by failing to make two Milestone payments.

Dissatisfied with the judgement, On January 27, 2021, IEC filed a petition to vacate the Award in New York state court but the court rejected IEC’s arguments.

“In short, due to the strong deference owed to the decisions of arbitrators, the Court is compelled to reject IEC’s arguments and confirm the Award,” the court ruled.

Poor Ethics/Underhand Business Practices

It is believed that the posture of the company and record of breaching contract is owing to its owner’s secretive and shady business activities. Prior to setting up Greenville, Eddy Van Den Broeke ran ASCA bitumen from 1996 and grew the company into becoming a giant monopoly with over 90% of the Nigerian market by 2015.

Through this position, he was famed to hold everyone to ransom through alleged arbitrary price increases, artificial scarcity, amongst others. Eddy Broeke’s families were one of six of Belgium’s wealthiest families that featured on the Panama Papers, a cross-border investigation that revealed a list of thousands of people who channelled funds to tax havens.

“The family of Eddy Van Den Broeke, who turned the Eres company into an international player, is also mentioned. Eddy Van Den Broeke is identified as the sole beneficiary of at least five offshore companies in the BVI,” the ICIJ report read.

Eddy was named in the Panama Papers having had an extensive network of shell companies to hide his funds and avoid government oversight.

Another multi-million dollar breach of contract suit looming

Our investigations also revealed that recently, BUA, which is one of Greenville’s largest clients, is set to allegedly sue Greenville for 50 billion Naira for a possible breach in contract and reneging on its obligation to supply gas to its businesses in the far north.

According to sources, this uj is as a result of Greenville LNG reneging on their contract with BUA to supply gas and also increasing prices arbitrarily despite the contractually agreed oil-indexed pricing for any changes in price.

Industry watchers have claimed that Greenville is trying to take advantage of its near monopoly in the domestic trucked LNG market hence their habit of entering into contracts and reneging on it after starting.

With Eddy and his companies’ history of reneging on contracts entered into with the Federal Government, partners, suppliers, communities and clients, it is unlikely that Greenville LNG or its billionaire owner Eddy and Managing Director Ritu Sahajwalla would stop such behaviour anytime soon.

Experts familiar with BUA’s history of ensuring its rights are enforced, believe BUA will pursue this issue to a logical conclusion at the courts and till their rights are enforced.

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Today’s victory is for the good people of Ogun State – Akinlade




Hon. Adekunle Akinlade

The significance of today’s judgement and the victory is that it is the ONLY case instituted by APC against the unique collaboration between Hon. Ladi Adebutu and Hon. Adekunle Akinlade, the PDP Gubernatorial and Deputy Governorship candidates in the 2023 general elections.

With this well deserved judgement, it is the turn of APC to take its own sucker punch. We hope they will have the stomach to hold the impact as the day of reckoning is counting down.

Once again, Hon. Adekunle Akinlade has commended his teeming loyalists and party’s faithful for the trust in the process and for remaining unshaken in their support for Hon. Oladipupo Adebutu and the PDP.

Rest assured, the PDP and all its candidates will contest the 2023 elections in Ogun State and victory is certain.

Azeez Adelani,
Media Aide to Hon. Adekunle Akinlade TRIPLE A,
19th October, 2022

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