The Federal High Court in Abuja has ordered the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele to present himself before the court on January 23, 2020, over a judgment debt of $53 million.
A Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Joe Agi, had obtained a garnishee order in July 2019 against the CBN to recover the $70 million judgment debt from Linas International Limited and the Minister of Finance.
The court document, Form 15 (Judgment Summons) seen by The Punch on Monday, indicated that the apex bank had paid Agi part of the $70 million, leaving a balance of $53 million.
Ruling in the matter, Justice I. E. Ekwo said Emefiele will have to tell the court why he should not be sentenced to prison, following the failure of the CBN to release the balance of $53m to Agi.
According to the summons, Emefiele must appear before the judge “to be examined on oath touching the means you have or have had, since the date of the said garnishee order absolute, to pay the balance of $53m now due and payable under the said garnishee order absolute and also show cause why you should not be committed to prison for default in payment of the said sum.”
Following an ex parte application, the Judge ordered Agi to serve the summons on Emefiele through substituted means by “publishing the summons in any of the following newspapers, viz: The Punch, Daily Trust or The Nation.”
“The newspaper publication ordered shall be made within 21 days of this order.
“Case adjourned till 23rd January, 2020, for mention,” the judge ruled.