N12.9b debt: AMCON explains status of Victory Park Estate, Lekki, Lagos

By Editor. 26/11/19

The Asset Management Company of Nigeria, (AMCON), has clarified the status of the widely publicised controversial estate located in a high brow area of Lekki, Lagos, Victory Park, saying: “AMCON took over possession of the property in issue on June 25, 2019 by the execution of the judgment of the Federal High Court. On the day of the execution of the order of court, the occupier of Block B, Plot 1 in the estate was present and aware that possession was being taken by AMCON. This was long before he approached the Lagos High Court to obtain an order of injunction on October 24, 2019.

It continued: “AMCON immediately appealed against the order of injunction and also applied to the Court of Appeal, Lagos for an order to suspend the order of injunction in view of the Provisions of AMCON’s Act, (as amended), No 2, 2019, which provides that such orders should not be granted against AMCON”.

AMCON made this clarification at a press conference held recently at Ikoyi, Lagos describing as untrue allegations of illegal possession made by a house owner in the estate one Adebayo Shittu, who claimed that AMCON sealed and damaged his property in the estate.

Mr Shittu had claimed that there was a subsisting interlocutory order of Injunction by Justice Kudirat Jose of the High Court of Lagos restraining AMCON from the property. The order according to him was granted on October 24, 2019 and it ordered AMCON not to prevent him from assessing his home in the estate.

“The judge made the order in suit LD/8418LMW/19 after dismissing a preliminary objection filed by Knight Rook Ltd, Mr Lanre Olaoluwa and AMCON. Mr Olaoluwa is AMCON and Knight Rook’s Receiver-Manager;

But Shittu alleged that on Monday, November 11,2019, Olaoluwa, in company of about 40 policemen and other persons, broke into his home, removed doors and windows and a portion of the roof”.

However in its reaction, AMCON flatly denied the allegations, stating that it took possession of Victory Park estate on June 25, 2019 by the execution of the Judgement of a Federal High Court as stated earlier by AMCON.

The corporation also denied that its Receiver-Manager, Mr Lanre Olaoluwa of Matrix Solicitors and his agents were in the estate as alleged, neither were they involved in whatever that was alleged that transpired.

In a statement read by Mr Jide Olasite, AMCON stated further: “For the avoidance of doubt, please note that from the time the Receiver-Manager took possession of Victory Park on June 16, 2017 pursuant to an interim order of the Federal High Court, AMCON magnanimously offered to ratify  the invalid titles of purported assignees in the estate.

“However, some of them who felt aggrieved even by this gesture decided to take out proceedings in court against AMCON and its Receiver-Manager and have continued to engage in various activities to malign them based on false, and distorted facts”.

The fact, according to the corporation is that it acquired a debt which arose from the acquisition and development of land owned by Knight Rook Limited and known as Victory Park Estate, as an eligible bank asset from a consortium of banks made up of Sterling Bank, Skye Bank, WEMA Bank, and Unity Bank, pursuant to AMCON Act 2010 (as amended).

” As collateral for the debt, the banks transferred to AMCON, 100% of the shares of Knight Rook Limited and designated 14 hectares of land within the Estate”.

“In order to recover the debt, by Deed of Appointment dated June 27, 2016, which was executed by AMCON and duly registered at the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), and an order of court of August 16, 2016 made in suit No: FHC/ AB/CS/69/16 , AMCON Vs Havilla Villas Limited, Mr Lanre Olaoluwa was appointed Receiver-Manager over Knight Rook limited, Grant Properties Ltd, and Fibigboye Estates Ltd, and took possession of the assets of Knight Rook Ltd, including the designated 14 hectares of land in the estate on June 16, 2017.

On October 3,2017, the Federal High Court , Lagos per Justice Ibrahim Buba entered judgement in favour of AMCON in FHC/L/CS/744/2017 for the sum of N12,966,510,191.10 and the foreclosure of the equity right of redemption and such order rights in the properties of Knight Rook limited to AMCON.

In compliance with the judgement, all assets held by the Receiver-Manager were handed over by him to AMCON on October 16,2017 in satisfaction of the judgement. From that date on, the Receiver-Manager ceased to be in possession, or control of the estate and other properties affected by the judgment.

On June 3, 2019, the Court of Appeal in Lagos affirmed the lower court’s judgement and by June 25, 2019, Sherrifs of the Federal High Court took possession of the properties.

It was after this date that Mr Shittu approached the Lagos High Court for an interim order against AMCON, which has been in possession till date.