Ogbonna Onyekachukwu, writes on the twist in the crisis bedeviling the Incorporated Trustees of Assemblies of God Nigeria, over purported dismissal of the General Superintendent, Rev. Prof. Paul Emeka and new court case.
The crisis in Assemblies of God, Nigeria has taken a dramatic twist as the embattled General Superintendent (GS), of the incorporated trustees of the Church; Rev. Prof. Paul Emeka has sued the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC, twelve commercial banks, Inspector General of Police, Enugu police Commissioner and ten others at the federal high court sitting Enugu for N2.8 billion in three separate suits for right violation negligence.
Other defendants in the suits are; Rev. Dr. John Ogbale Ikoni, Rev. Dr. Chidi Agodi Okoroafor, Rev. Vincent Akin Alaje, Rev. Godwin Mekedo Idogo, Rev. Dr. Johnson Okorie Odii, Rev. Dr. Charles Ogbonnaya Osueke, Rev. J. V Edivri, Rev. Pastor Ejikeme Ejim and Rev. Godwin Akpan Amaowoh (PhD).
The twelve banks sued are; Union Bank Plc, Zenith Bank Plc, Fidelity Bank Plc, Diamond Bank Plc, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, United Bank for Africa Plc, Access Bank Plc, ECO Bank Plc, First Bank of Nigeria Plc, Skye Bank Plc, First City Monument Bank Plc and AG Homes Savings and Loans Plc.
The GS suing through his appointed attorney, Mr. Ifeanyichukwu Okonkwo in suits number; FHC/EN/CS/120/2017, FHC/EN/CS/121/2017 & FCH/EN/CS/122/2017 seeks several reliefs among which he (plaintiff) want the court to declare that the act of 1st defendant CAC by complying with the illegal instruction of the defendants above and subsequently including two defendants as trustees of Assemblies body. And consequential issuance of certificate No. CAC/IT/NO. 349 dated 30th day of April, 2015 which was done without following due process of law.
“Moreso, when defendants were aware that the plaintiff was in court pursuing his legal right, a body that has respect for rule of law which the CAC ought to be, would have waited for the outcome of the court proceedings having been aware of same. The certificate issued containing two other people in the incorporated trustees of the church, is null and void ab intio, consequently, Certificate No. CAC/IT/NO. 349, is hereby set aside.
He also want the court to declare that the CAC’s act with other defendants against (him), is outrageous and merit punishment as it discloses malice, fraud, cruelty, flagrant disregard to due process and the rule of law. “Therefore, an order of exemplary/ aggravated damages is hereby made in the favour of the plaintiff in the sum of N100 million against the 1st defendants (CAC).
“An order directing the other nine defendants to pay the plaintiff the sum of N1 billion jointly and severally for their illegal acts, which is outrageous.. and with fraudulent intentions in total disregard for rule of law and constitutionality.”
In the suit No. FHC/EN/CS/121/2017 the plaintiff wants a declaration of the court that the acts of the other defendants above by purportedly given instructions and interfering with the banks accounts of the Incorporated Trustees of Assemblies of God, Nigeria making withdrawals therefrom, purportedly on behalf of the Assemblies of God, Nigeria on the bank balances held by the twelve banks in the suit without any lawful authority and changing the mandate by excluding the plaintiff within the period the 15th of April, 2014 up till 24th day of February, 2017, they were aware at that time that the plaintiff was in court pursuing his legal right, a body that has respect for rule of law which have waited for the outcome of the court proceedings. All the instructions and withdrawals on the instruction given to the banks by the defendants purporting to be the act of the Assemblies of God (1st defendant) is illegal, null and void and same set outside forthwith.
“An order directing the defendants to render accounts to the plaintiff regarding all the assets including banks accounts operated by them illegally during the period they held themselves out as the directing mind of the 1stdefendant by illegally excluding the plaintiff.
“An order directing the twelve banks to return into the banks accounts of the 1st defendant (Incorporated Trustees of Assemblies of God, Nigeria) all the withdrawals made by the other defendants without legally recognized Certificate Incorporation as shown in Certificate of Registration CAC/IT/NO 349, dated 18th September, 2012.”
Rev. Emeka wants the court to declare that the unlawful acts of the banks and failure to protect the assets of the church which is a duty a body that has respect for rule of law, particularly having been aware of the pendency of the suit of the plaintiff since April, 15th 2014 is outrageous and merit punishment and it disclosed malice, fraud, cruelty, flagrant disregard to due process of law. “Therefore, an order of exemplary/ aggravated damages is hereby made in the favour of the 1st defendant against the twelve banks in the sum of N100 million each.
“An order directing the banks to render a financial account of the withdrawals and debits on the Church accounts held in their various banks respectively.”
While in the suit No. FHC/EN/CS/122/2017, Rev. Emeka seeks a declaration of court that without any order from a court of competent jurisdiction, the defendants cannot interfere with the rights and privileges accruing to the plaintiff as the General Superintendent and the Trustee of the 1st defendant. The plaintiff is entitled to retain and peacefully enjoy his post house accommodation at No. 8 link road, Independence Layout, Enugu.
“A declaration that the acts, embarrassment, illegal prosecution and the interference with the plaintiff’s authority and rights over the affairs of the 1st defendant, between the period 5th April, 2014 and 24th day of February, 2017, are outrageous, and merit punishment as it discloses malice, fraud, cruelty and flagrant disregard to due process and rule of law.
“An order of exemplary /aggravated damages in favour of the plaintiff, in the sum of N500 million against the IGP, Enugu state police commissioner and nine other defendants jointly and severally for their illegal acts, which is outrageous and with fraudulent intentions in total disregard for rule of law and constitutionality.
In a statement of claim, Rev. Emeka stated that the Corporate Affairs Commission knowing fully well that his removal is a subject matter of litigation between him and nine other defendants, with its eyes open, willfully and unconstitutionally removed the plaintiff (himself) and issued a Certificate No. CAC/1T/NO. 349 dated 30th of April, 2015.