Appeal court hears application to stay proceedings in sale of Daily Times assets to Mikano February 5
The court of appeal, Lagos has adjourned hearing in the application filed by Theodore Jnr. Ezeobi, seeking to discontinue further proceedings in the appeal filed by Mikano International Limited over the nullification of its purchase of Daily Times Nigeria property till February 5, 2018.
Mikano had brought the appeal, praying the court to vacate the order of the federal high court, Lagos, which voided its purchase of Daily Times asset in Ikeja from Fidelis Anosike and Folio Communications Limited, when a winding up petition was pending against the firm.
But Ezeobi, a creditor to Daily Times had filed the application pursuant to section 412 and 417 of the Company and Allied Matters Act (CAMA), which makes it mandatory for discontinuance of proceedings upon the pendency of a winding up proceedings against a company.
The applicant had in 2005 commenced a winding up proceedings against Daily Times before a federal high court, Lagos in suit number FHC/L/CP/917/2005 resulting in the appointment of a provisional liquidator.
According to his motion on notice marked CA/L/133/14, the applicant states: “By the provision of section 417 of CAMA, if a winding up order is made or a provisional liquidator is appointed (as is the case in the winding up proceedings), no action or proceedings shall be proceeded with or commenced against the company except by leave of the court, given on such terms as the court may impose. No leave of the winding up court was sought or granted to the appellants in this action.”
The applicant said he is also relying on the judgment of the court of appeal, which validated the winding up petition in appeal No: CA/L/898/2008.
In a 14 paragraph affidavit deposed to by a lawyer in the chambers of Fides and Fiducia, Muhammed-Kameel Audu, the applicant swore that Daily Times is indebted to the applicant in the sum of N18 million with 40 percent interest for professional services rendered over a period of years, which debt the publishing company acknowledged.
“Upon failure by Daily times to pay the said debt, the creditor filed a petition for the winding up of Daily Times of Nigeria on August 30, 2005 and the said debt is still wholly unpaid.
“Unless all further proceedings in this action is stayed until the conclusion of the hearing of the winding up petition, the property and assets will be wholly dissipated and misappropriated, leaving nothing whatsoever for the payment of debts owed to the bona fide creditors of the respondent including the applicant whose interests take precedence over those of shareholders and owners of the Daily Times of Nigeria Plc in the most likely event of the pending winding up petition aforesaid is granted,” he averred.
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