FCTA Emerges Victorious: Appeal Court Orders Retrial of $600m Garnishee Order

FCTA Emerges Victorious: Appeal Court Orders Retrial of $600m Garnishee Order
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Appeal Court Orders Retrial

In a recent turn of events, the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has emerged victorious in a significant legal battle. The Appeal Court, in a landmark judgment, has ordered the retrial of a contentious $600 million garnishee order against the FCTA. This verdict marks a pivotal moment in a case that has been mired in controversy and legal intricacies.

The Background

Appeal Court Orders Retrial

The origins of this legal saga can be traced back to an alleged breach of contract between the FCTA and Kohath Property Development Company Limited. Kohath had claimed that the FCTA was liable for the payment of over $600 million with interest due to this alleged breach. This led to a protracted legal battle that ultimately reached the FCT High Court.

The Appeal

Appeal Court Orders Retrial

The recent judgment from the Appeal Court stems from an appeal filed by Joe Gadzama (SAN) on behalf of the Minister of the FCT and other relevant parties. The crux of this appeal was to challenge the verdict of the FCT High Court, which had previously held the FCTA liable for the substantial sum.

The Critical Discovery

Appeal Court Orders Retrial

One of the pivotal aspects of this case was the discovery that, despite an order of stay of execution pending the determination of the appeal by the FCT High Court (the same court which had delivered the initial judgment), and an appeal against the said decision, Kohath Property Development Company Limited had proceeded with the enforcement of the judgment. This action, however, was deemed liable to contempt of court.

Unprecedented Actions

Appeal Court Orders Retrial

Kohath took an unprecedented step by approaching Justice Aguma of the Rivers State High Court, Bori, and obtained garnishee absolute orders in a bid to expedite the enforcement of the judgment. Remarkably, this move was made despite the awareness that there was a pending appeal and an order for the stay of execution pending the outcome of the appeal by the same court that had initially delivered the judgment.

The Turning Point

Appeal Court Orders Retrial

The Court of Appeal, in a definitive ruling, set aside the judgment of the FCT High Court that had awarded the substantial sum against the FCTA, the decision upon which Kohath had commenced enforcement. This significant development brings a sense of closure to a legal battle that had cast a shadow over the FCTA and its stakeholders.

The Honorable Justices

Appeal Court Orders Retrial

Justices O. E. Williams-Dawodu, U. A. Ogakwu, and J. Y. Tukur, who presided over the appeal, remitted the matter back to the FCT High Court for an expedient hearing. This decision ensures that justice will be served through a thorough review of the case, free from any procedural irregularities.

Implications and Reflection

Appeal Court Orders Retrial

The FCT Minister, Nyesom Wike, expressed his concerns about the garnishee order and questioned the source of funds that the FCT Administration would utilize to meet this substantial financial obligation. This verdict by the Appeal Court offers a glimmer of hope for the FCTA, potentially relieving them of the staggering financial burden.

In conclusion, the recent judgment by the Appeal Court to order the retrial of the $600 million garnishee order against the FCTA is a significant development in a complex legal battle. The decision ensures that justice is served without the shadow of procedural irregularities. The FCTA can now look forward to a fair and impartial examination of the case, providing an opportunity for resolution and closure.

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