GTBank says it exhibited corporate integrity in N5.2b case, appeals ruling
The Guarantee Trust Bank (GTB) has refuted the claims arising from a decision of an Abuja High Court indicating that it withdrew funds illegally from its customer’s account, saying it only exhibited corporate integrity.
Justice Valentine Ashi had ordered GTB to pay N5.2billion back to one of its customers, Dr. Ted Iseghohi Edwards, of Edwards and Partners Law firm, representing the amount supposedly withdrawn from Edward’s account without his knowledge or consent.
But the bank, which has already appealed the decision said it never withdrew its customers funds as being represented, but that a fuller examination of the case reveals a number of legal facts, compliance issues and judgement issues.
The bank is maintaining that as a highly ethical and law abiding institution, it had carried out the transfer of the said N5.2 billion to the Central Bank as directed by the Ministry of Finance through the CBN.
“This withdrawal was actually at the implicit instruction of the Central Bank of Nigeria and GTB complied and moved the funds to CBN as directed.
“Edwards represented to the Bank that Edwards and Partners had judgment funds with the Government which funds would be transferred to Edwards and Partners.
Based on this representation GTB allowed Edwards and Partners to open an account with the bank into which the said judgment sum was credited by the CBN.
“CBN on finding out that facts as to a pending appeal against the said judgment were suppressed by the said Edwards, immediately on December 12, 2014 reversed the said credit from GTB’s account with the CBN”, the bank stated.
Edwards instituted the case against the CBN, GTB Ministry of Finance, Accountant General of the Federation and a number of other parties seeking the payment of the said sum already reversed by the CBN.
Also, the CBN in their pleadings which were before the court clearly admitted crediting the Bank’s account with the judgment sum and reversing the credit of the judgment sum at the instance of the Minister of Finance.
“In spite of the said pleadings of the CBN, the court still ruled that the Bank should credit the Plaintiff’s account with the judgment sum”, the bank lamented, adding that in spite of the said processes before the court, the judge still proceeded to strike out the names of CBN, Minister of State for Finance, Accountant General of the Federation and all the other defendants, leaving GTBank as the sole defendant. The bank said: “GTBank had earlier filed an application to transfer the matter to another court.
However in the face of the said objection, the Honourable judge dismissed the pending application to transfer the matter and hastily gave his ruling directing the Bank to credit the Plaintiff’s account with the judgment sum which sum was not in the possession of the Bank.
The said amount was and still remains in the custody of the Central Bank”.
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