No basis for takeover, BEDC management tells Fidelity
Management of Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC) Plc has said there is no legal basis for the takeover of the company following reported activation of the call on its collateralised shares by Fidelity Bank.
his is contained in a statement issued, yesterday, by BEDC management. The activation seeks to take over respective boards of Kano Electricity Distribution Company, Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company and BEDC Electricity Plc (the DisCos) over inability to repay loans obtained to acquire majority stakes in the DisCos in furtherance of the 2013 privatisation exercise.
The company in a statement released in Benin, yesterday, said: “The referenced report also alleges that certain parties have been appointed as board members, independent directors and managing director of BEDC Electricity Plc.
We understand these appointments have been communicated to the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) and the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission.
“However, the management of BEDC states unequivocally that there is no contractual, statutory or regulatory basis for such.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the shares of BEDC have not been given as security to Fidelity Bank or to any other party.”
The statement reads further: “As we understand it, Vigeo Holdings Limited (VHL – a non-shareholder of BEDC) obtained credit facilities from Stanbic IBTC Bank Limited, Fidelity Bank Plc, and Keystone Bank Plc (the VHL Lenders).
“We further understand that the said credit facilities (and any enforcement action in relation thereto) have in the meantime become subject of litigation in a court action instituted by VHL and other plaintiffs (the VHL Action) with Suit No: FHC/L/CS/239/22 – Vigeo Holdings Limited and 4 Ors v. Stanbic IBTC Bank Limited, and therefore, subjudiced.”
The management of BEDC Electricity Plc warned: “Any attempt by Fidelity Bank and/or BPE to intervene in BEDC in the manner being reported will be illegal, unlawful and will be resisted.”
The company urged its customers, investors and partners to ignore the trending reports and assured them of continuing operations.