Thursday, 19 April 2018

Business: Court stops planned sale of 9mobile

The Abuja division of the Federal High
Court has halted the planned sale of
embattled telecommunication firm,
Etisalat (now 9mobile) following
opposition to the move by some
aggrieved shareholders.
The shareholders – Afdin Ventures
Limited and Dirbia Nigeria Limited – who
claimed to be major investors, complained
of being left out in the firm’s decision-
making processes and are therefore
demanding the refund of their investment
estimated at $43,330,950 (N1.56 billion).
The decision was consequent upon a suit
filed before the court by the shareholders.
In the said suit marked: FHC/ABJ/
CR/288/2018, Karlington
Telecommunications Ltd, Premium
Telecommunications Holdings NV, First
Bank of Nigeria Plc, Central Bank of
Nigeria (CBN), Etisalat International
Nigeria Ltd and Nigerian Communication
Commission (NCC) were all been listed as
defendants.
Justice Binta Nyako had, after listening to
Mahmud Magaji, who moved an ex-parte
motion on behalf of the aggrieved
shareholders, ruled that “an order is made
for the maintenance of status quo as at
today (yesterday).”
Justice Nyako, who said, “the defendants
ought to be heard,” also ordered the
service of processes on them (the
defendants), including the 3rd and 5th
(First Bank and Etisalat), whose
addresses are outside jurisdiction.
The judge, who also ordered that “the writ
be marked as concurrent,” adjourned to
May 14 for mention. The plaintiffs said in
a statement of claim that they bought
shares in Etisalat from the 1st and 2nd
defendants (Karlington Ltd and Premium
Holdings) through “a private placement
memorandum in which the 3rd defendant
(First Bank) served as a custodian of the
plaintiffs’ share certificate.”
They said while the 1st plaintiff (Afdin
Ventures) “bought 1,300,391 Class A
shares at $13,003,910,” which it paid for
on August 14, 2009, the 2nd plaintiff
(Dirbia Ltd) acquired 3,300,004 Class A
shares at $30,030,040, for which it made
payment on September 3, 2009.

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