Femi Otedola Sues Zenith Bank For Over Illegal Shares Acquisition

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Femì Otedola, a billionaire, has filed a lawsuit against Zenith Bank Plc and its Chairman, Jim Ovia, in the Federal High Court in Lagos. The lawsuit alleges unlawful and unauthorized charges in the bank’s account, as well as the illegal and forcible recovery of his Zenith Bank shares.

In the complaint No: FHC/L/Cs/425/24 dated March 6, 2024, in which Zenith Bank, Quantum Zenith Securities, Veritas Registrars, and Central Securities Clearing System are joined as defendants, Otedola is requesting the court to make the following orders: An order instructing Zenith Bank plc to repay the sum of N205,346,573 that was unlawfully debited on January 27, 2011 from Zenon Petroleum Limited account 1010385211, with accrued interest.

An order instructing Zenith Bank Limited to release, repay, and credit Zenon Petroleum Limited with Zenith Bank shares totaling (1,300,000,000) One billion and three hundred million shares were illegally stolen from Zenon in 2011.

An order of permanent injunction prohibiting Zenith Bank and other defendants from further withholding, selling, transferring, trading, and registering Zenon Petroleum Limited shares.

An order requiring Zenith Bank plc and its co-defendants to pay and/or return a total of N88 billion in unpaid dividends accumulated on Zenon limited shares fraudulently obtained by Zenith Bank plc from 2011 to the present.

An order directing the defendants jointly and severally to pay accrued interest at the rate of 10 percent per annum on the sum of N88 Billion from April 18th, 2012 until judgement is delivered.

An order directing the defendants to refund any wrongful debits and pay the plaintiff accrued and unpaid dividends on the account and shareholding of Zenon Petroleum to determined by an independent audit firm.

The Plaintiff also requested the court to grant it damages of N800 million. Authoritative sources within Zenon Petroleum limited informed our reporter that Zenith Bank plc has made entreaties to Zenon seeking an out of Court settlement, but Zenon has refused; insisting that it would prefer a Judicial pronouncement given that Zenith Bank plc is known as an institution that has penchant for illegally tampering with customers account.

The source also confirmed that investigations are on to determine whether Jim Ovia was the eventual beneficiary of the shares illegally recovered from Zenon and how Jim Ovia paid for the shares, which is believed , may have been recovered without payment for them.

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