From Godwin Tsa, Abuja
The Abuja division of the Federal High Court has given permission to a registered financial institution, Cashflow Abi Network and its CEO, Dr Philemon Ibrahim Gora, to file a suit compelling the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission(EFCC), its Chairman, Abdulrasheed Bawa and the Inspector General of Police to comply with the judgment of the court in suit No FHC/ABJ/CR/77/2018.
Justice Ahmed Mohammed equally granted leave to the applicants to apply for an Order of Mandamus compelling or mandating the Respondents to withdraw and or discontinue charge Nos. FHC/ABJ/CR/77/2018: FRN vs Philemon Ibrahim Gora & Anor and FCT/HC/CR/203/2018: FRN vs Philemon Ibrahim Gora & 2 Ors in that the aforesaid charges were instituted in contravention of paragraph 14 of the Terms of Settlement adopted as Judgment of this court delivered on 12th July 2013 in Suit No. FHC/ABJ/CS/7/2013 aforesaid.
In addition, the court further granted leave to the Applicants to apply for an Order of perpetual injunction pursuant to paragraph 14 of the Terms of Settlement adopted as Judgment of this Court on 12th July 2013 restraining the Respondents their officers, servant, agents and any other person deriving authority from the Respondents from trying, continuing the trial, arresting, detaining or prosecuting the Applicants in charge Nos. FHC/ABJ/CR/77/2018 and FCT/HC/CR/203/2018 and other matters related to the aforesaid charges.
Justice Mohammed granted the request after listening to counsel to the applicants, Chief Solomon Akuma who moved a motion exparte brought pursuant to section 14 of the Federal High Court Act, order 28 rules 1 and 2 and order 34 rules 1, 2 and 3 of the Federal High Court (Civil Procedure) rules 2019.
Ruling on the exparte motion marked FHC/ABJ/CV/644/2023, Justice Mohammed held; After listening to counsel to the applicants and the accompanying processes attached to the application, Iam satisfied that the applicants have made a good case against the respondents. The application is hereby granted as prayed.
The court has however ordered that hearing notice be issued to the respondents before the hearing date fixed for June 20, 2023.
Dr Gora had in an affidavit sworn at the Federal High Court, alleged conspiracy between Economic Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and banks on the Court judgment obtained by the company on the case instituted against the agency, banks and the Nigerian Police to fully unfreeze the account.
By law, Cashflow Abi Network Ltd was registered since 2011 with CAC and having its headquarters in No 21 Apollo Crescent, Jos, Plateau State with physical branch offices in several states of the federation. The same company had applied to Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) as funds portfolio manager and investment adviser.
Sometime ago the SEC had filed a petition to the Inspector General of Police (IG-P) and the Economic Financial and Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate the business activities of Cashflow ABI Network Ltd and its chairman, Gora for allegedly running an illegal financial institution.
EFCC directed all corporate bank accounts of Cashflow Abi Ltd and that of its chairman to be frozen with all depositors /investors’ funds trapped.
Cashflow and its chairman, Philemon Gora, then instituted a case in court in suit N0: FHC/ABJ/CS/7/2013 against EFCC and the IG-Police.
A judgment was made in the above suit mandating the applicants (Cash Flow ABI Network Ltd and Philemon Gora) and the defendants (the EFCC and the IG-P) to set up a committee with the purpose of unfreezing the accounts of the applicants and refunds of deposits to clients/investors of Cash Flow Abi Network Limited.
The court based its judgment on the overriding interest of the public and the poor investors whom were mainly peasants investing their lifesavings in the scheme. The court also understood the social and security breaches that may ensue should such investors lose their investments.
The executive directors confirmed that there is enough money in the frozen banks accounts to pay the clients of Cash Flow Abi Network Ltd.