Lawyers of Mr. Daniel Ofori are demanding Ecobank Ghana Limited to pay their client the sum of GH¢ 96, 304,972.41 as ordered by the Supreme Court.
In the view of the lawyers that is the surest way for “Ecobank to give assurance to its customers, shareholders and the general public about its standing as a bank is to obey court orders”.
Lawyer Thaddeus Sory representing Mr. Ofori is emphatic that failure to execute the court judgment leaves his client with “no option but to proceed with the fi-fa on the head office building.”
The lawyer in a rejoinder to a media release by Ecobank limited stated that following a writ of fieri facias (fi-fa) which was issued against the bank for its failure to pay the sum of GHS96, 304,972.41, which the Supreme Court, has ordered them to pay Mr. Ofori, based on the bank’s own admission at a hearing on 1st June 2021 adding that “After the pasting by a court bailiff of the fi-fa on the Head Office building of Ecobank on Friday, 26th November 2021, Ecobank issued a media release dated 26th November, 2021 in which false and libelous allegations are made against Mr. Ofori”.
The statement said “For, instance, it is simply not true that Mr. Ofori tendered in evidence the investment agreement between Ecobank and himself at any stage in the case. The truth, as the court records and the judgment of the Supreme Court dated 25th July, 2018, confirm, is that Ecobank itself admitted that the agreed interest rate on the investment made by Mr. Ofori with Ecobank was 30%. The judgment of the Supreme Court was therefore based on this admission.”
The lawyers opined that having regard to the fact that the Supreme Court judgment was based on Ecobank’s own admission, it clearly does not make sense to suggest that Mr. Ofori has forged an investment agreement to prove his case against Ecobank.
“After the judgment of the Supreme Court, Ecobank surfaced with a document it described as the investment agreement in which was inserted the figure 15 as the percentage for interest on the investment.”
Mr. Ofori’s lawyers further indicated that this was completely at variance with the 30% Ecobank had itself admitted to stressing that “It is Ecobank which has an interest in contradicting its earlier admission by seeking belatedly to introduce a document in which an interest rate of 15% is being put forward three years after the judgment of the Supreme Court and even after the failure of the application for review in March 2021.”
It said significantly, there is no application pending before the Supreme Court to reopen that matter, as the media release of the bank suggests, stressing that “the only application filed by Ecobank recently is one for review of the Supreme Court’s decision refusing Ecobank’s earlier application to reopen the decision of Supreme Court on appeal in 2018 with the introduction of “new evidence”. We have filed an application to the Supreme Court on behalf of Mr. Ofori to strike out what Ecobank filed. This is because Ecobank failed to comply with the Rules of the Supreme Court and the previous order of the court in filing the processes.”
The statement noted that “We should also point out that we wrote to the Registrar of the Supreme Court on 21st November 2021 and obtained confirmation that there was no pending application for a stay of execution in that court before we proceeded to have the fi-fa notice pasted on the head office building of Ecobank. The earlier garnishee proceedings referred to in the media release of Ecobank are a different kind of enforcement process from the fi-fa that is currently being pursued by us on behalf of Mr. Ofori.”
The lawyers further contended that Ecobank has, for years now, deprived Mr. Ofori of funds he had in an account with the bank and part of which he invested on the terms admitted by the bank indicating that “ Such conduct is plainly wrong, being a breach of Ecobank obligations as a bank to Mr. Ofori as a customer. This has had serious consequences for Mr. Ofori’s business.”
The statement argued “It is a matter of grave concern that, after the court official pasted the fi-fa notice on the Ecobank building following Ecobank failure to make the payment ordered by the Supreme Court, a member of Ecobank staff removed the notice, showing contempt for lawful court process. Ecobank should not seek to take the law into its own hands. ”