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Court restrains unlawful takeover of BEDC

By Ameh Ochojila, Abuja
11 July 2022   |   2:45 am
In an action commenced by Vigeo Power Limited, the majority shareholder of Benin Electricity Distribution Company Plc (BEDC), the Federal High Court in Abuja has issued an order restraining

BEDC. Photo: FACEBOOK/BEDC<br />

In an action commenced by Vigeo Power Limited, majority shareholder of Benin Electricity Distribution Company Plc (BEDC), the Federal High Court in Abuja has issued an order restraining Fidelity Bank Plc and other co-defendants from taking over BEDC, pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice dated July 8, 2022.

The other defendants are the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), Henry Ajagbawa, Charles Onwera, Yomi Adeyemi, K.C. Akuma and Yomi Adeyemi.

Those affected by the order include the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) and the Nigeria Police Force (NPF).

In the suit (FHC/ABJ/CS/1113/2022), Vigeo Power is praying the court for an order of interim injunction restraining Fidelity Bank Plc, whether directly or indirectly, through its directors, managers, officers, employees, servants, consultants, attorneys, agents, representatives, privies, however so-called, persons acting under its instructions and control, including the entities set out into this application from altering or further altering board composition of BEDC Electricity Plc (BEDC) or working in concert with any person or party to alter the board composition of BEDC.

The applicant also prayed for an order of interim injunction restraining NERC and CAC, whether directly by themselves or indirectly, through their directors, managers, officers, employees, servants, consultants, attorneys, agents, representatives, privies, and so-called, persons acting under their instructions and control, including the entities, set out into this application from registering or recognising Henry Ajagbawa, Charles Onwera, Yomi Adeyemi, K.C. Akuma, Yomi Adeyemi as directors of BEDC, pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice dated July 8, 2022.

Video also prayed the court for an order of interim injunction restraining Henry Ajagbawa, Charles Onwera, Yomi Adeyemi, K.C. Akuma, and Yomi Adeyemi, whether directly by themselves or indirectly, through their consultants, attorneys, agents, representatives, privies, however so-called, persons acting under their instructions and control, including the entities, set out into this application from parading themselves or holding themselves out as directors of BEDC, pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice dated July 8, 2022.

 
Besides this, the applicant also asked the court for an order of interim injunction restraining Henry Ajagbawa, Charles Onwera, Yomi Adeyemi, K.C. Akuma, and Yomi Adeyemi, whether directly by themselves or indirectly, through their agents, representatives privies, however so-called, persons acting under their instructions and control, including the entities, set out into this application from taking over the management and control of the affairs, assets and undertakings of BEDC, pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice dated July 8, 2022.

Vigeo Power is seeking these prayers from the court following the purported activation of the call on the collateralised shares of Kano Electricity Distribution Company, Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company and BEDC Electricity Plc (the DisCos) recently in a bid to take over the respective Boards of the DisCos over the inability to repay the loans obtained to acquire majority stakes in the DisCos in furtherance of the 2013 privatisation exercise.

The referenced report also alleged that certain parties have been appointed as Board Members, Independent Directors and Managing Director of BEDC Electricity Plc.