The Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation, NDIC, has prayed a Federal High Court in Lagos to place on the “undefended list” a suit it filed to recover an alleged debt of N34 million.
The debt is owed by the Senior Special Assistant to President Goodluck Jonathan, on Public Affairs, Doyin Okupe , Value Trust Investment Limited and its Director, Ray Ahazie.
The NDIC had instituted the action to recover the alleged debt, being the outstanding of a loan facility obtained by the respondents from Gulf Bank Plc in October 2,000.
The corporation, in a statement of claim by its lawyer, Abiodun Layonu (SAN), said the respondents obtained the loan from the bank to facilitate a contract to supply the Bayelsa State Government with 10,000 metric tons of imported rice.
The NDIC, however stated that though the said rice was successfully imported into the country on December 28, 2000, the ship was unable to berth at the Apapa Port in Lagos until January 3, 2001 because the port was congested.
The corporation stated further that when the ship arrived at Port Harcourt on July 26, 2001, an unpaid agency fee in the sum of $155,000 prevented it from berthing and the delay in the delivery of the rice bags led to some becoming caked and some becoming stained.
Bayelsa State Government was said to have refused to take delivery of the rice, following which Gulf Bank was forced to commence an open market sale of the goods and in the process, discovered that a good number of the rice bags were spoilt. The bank said at the end of the sale, it was able to recoup only N454,574,150 of the loan advanced to the defendants, leaving an outstanding sum of N70,425,850.
The NDIC however claimed that following the waiver, the defendants were able to pay only N10m out of the N44m, bringing the debt down to N34m. But since then the defendants were said to have allegedly abandoned the debt or refused to liquidate it.
To this end, the corporation is seeking to reclaim the indebted sum with 21 per cent interest per annum till it would be finally liquidated.