Alleged debt: Court freezes accounts of Swift Networks, CEO Charles Anudu

Swift Network Board
Charles Anudu
Alleged debt: Court freezes accounts of Swift Networks, CEO Charles Anudu 2

The Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has granted Union Bank Plc. an interim order of Injunction restraining Swift Networks Limited and its agents from accessing funds and assets in all banks pending the determination of a Motion on Notice in an alleged debt recovery suit.

Justice Yellim Bogoro granted the order after listening to a motion exparte filed by counsel for Union Bank, Gbenga Akinde.

In the application filed on June 11, 2024, Union Bank had listed Swift Networks and its Managing Director, Charles Anudu as the Defendants/Respondents.

Documents put before the court in support of the application disclosed that:

 In 2017, the bank had agreed to grant various credit facilities to the 1st Defendant, Swift Networks for several purposes.

In addition to accepting the bank’s offer of loan facilities, the 1st Defendant had also passed different Board Resolutions accepting the facilities: Despite the undertakings and assurances given by the 1″ Defendant to the Plaintiff, the Defendants failed to meet its repayment obligations arising from the offer letters of 2017 and September, 2020, thereby occasioning a deterioration on the facilities, while interests continue to accrue in line with the terms and conditions as contained in the offer letters.

As at 30th day of June, 2023, the 1″ Defendant’s indebtedness to the Plaintiff stood at N7,037,410,548.23 (Seven Billion, Thirty-Seven Million, Four Hundred and Ten Thousand, Five Hundred and Forty-Eight Naira, Twenty-Three Kobo) while interest continues to accrue.

In the light of this, the Plaintiff instituted action against Swift Networks Limited. with a view to compel the 1st Defendant to pay its outstanding indebtedness. In the course of proceedings, parties opted for an out-of-court settlement and executed Terms of Settlement dated 23d day of August, 2023.

This constituted a fresh contract which mandatorily created new obligations between parties and substituted and superseded all prior claims with a bid to amicably resolve the matter, but Swift Networks still deliberately refused to honour the agreement and the recent development according to Union Bank, has led to it instituting a fresh action to enforce the new Agreement between the parties.

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On June 19, 2024, the court granted Union Bank’s Mareva orders restraining Swift Networks from accessing monies up to the tune of N7billion in 25 banks to protect the res.

Justice Bogoro restrained the Defendants, their Directors, Staff, Management and Agents from tampering with, operating, withdrawing from, and/or dealing with the Defendants’ funds (whether held directly or by proxy) in any bank and/or financial institution within Nigeria pending the hearing and determination of the Motion on Notice.

The judge also directed all Banks/Financial Institutions harbouring the defendants’ accounts to depose on oath and furnish the plaintiff or its firm of solicitors, the details of the credit outstanding in the defendants’ account within 7 (seven) days of receipt of the order.

Furthermore, the order restrained any electronic payment platforms, or digital and payment service banks including Interswitch Limited, Interswitch Financial Inclusion Services, Hope Payment Service Bank, 9PSB, Hope PSB, Money Master PSB, MOMO PSB, Smartcash PSB etc.) from processing payments authorised by the defendants, while also barring the defendants from their services to process funds payment.

The banks were also mandated to disclose such assets and funds standing to the credit of the defendants in their custody within seven days. “This suit is hereby adjourned to the 10th day of July 2024 for Motion on Notice. Defendants/Respondents shall be put on notice.

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