NNPC, CBN appeal Abuja Court’s garnishee order

By Onyebuchi Sampson

The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) have appealed the ruling of Justice Taiwo O. Taiwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja.

The ruling, held on February 28, 2022, in suit No: FHC/ABJ/CS/54/2012 – HRH (Dr.) Effiong B. Archianga & 10 Ors v. NNPC & Ors, made a garnishee order absolute against the NNPC.

Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited and the NNPC had appealed the main judgment of the Federal High Court in Appeal No. CA/ABJ/CV/395/2021 and filed a motion for stay of execution of the judgment at the Court of Appeal.

It was stated in the court papers that while the appeal and the motion for stay of execution were still pending at the Court of Appeal, the judgment creditors commenced garnishee proceedings against the 1st judgment Debtor (NNPC).

It was further gathered that the court by an ex parte application, had granted the garnishee order nisi on December 15, 2021, in favour of the judgment creditors and the 1st judgment debtor had, following the garnishee order nisi filed two applications, asking the court to set aside the order.

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It also asked the court to set aside the service of the garnishee order nisi on NNPC, who according to it was not the judgment debtor on record in the garnishee proceedings.

The CBN, it was learnt, also filed court papers asking the court to set aside the garnishee order nisi made against it for lack of jurisdiction and fundamental irregularity, which according to it, was due to the judgment creditors’ failure to obtain the consent of the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) before seeking to attach the funds in the custody of the CBN.

The court in a ruling delivered on February 28, 2022, disagreed with the submissions of counsel to NNPC and the CBN.

The NNPC and the CBN have both filed appeals as well as filed a motion for stay of execution against the garnishee order absolute of Justice Taiwo O. Taiwo.

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