*CAN BANKS CHALLENGE COURT CASES/ORDERS ON BEHALF OF CUSTOMERS. * DAILY LAW TIPS (Tip 302) by Onyekachi Umah, Esq., LLM. ACIArb(UK)

The answer is No. Particularly in cases of garnishee proceeding, where a bank is a garnishee, the only duty the bank owes is to show why monies kept or owed by it to a judgement debtor should not be ordered to be paid to a judgement creditor. Hence, bank has no power to argue and defend its customer (judgement debtor) or to protect monies of such customer or to contest the validity of a court order.
Note that, “Garnishee Proceedings” is a procedure where a judgement creditor (a winner in a case/successful litigant) sues a person/company holding the money/goods of a judgement debtor (a loser in a case/unsuccessful litigant) to pay/transfer such money/goods directly to the judgement creditor as away to enable a judgement creditor enforce his judgement.

My authorities are the Supreme Court decisions in the cases of GUARANTY TRUST BANK PLC V. INNOSON NIGERIA LTD (2017) LPELR-42368(SC) and also UNION BANK OF NIGERIA PLC V. BONEY MARCUS INDUSTRIES LTD (2005) 13 NWLR (PT. 943) 654 at page 666.

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Upon hearing the application of Onyekachi Umah, Esq. LLM., ACIArb(UK) on behalf of the judgment creditor in the case of MRS. FINE ALUKO V. DIAMOND BANK PLC (Suit No: FCT/HC/CV/1419/2009), the court sitting in Apo ordered contempt proceedings against the directors of the judgment debtor (Diamond Bank PlC).

The court granted the leave sought by the Abuja based lawyer for Form 48 and Form 49 of the Judgment (Enforcement) Rules to be served on the judgement debtor’s directors, Mr. Uzoma Dozie (Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer), Mr. Oluseyi Bickersteth (Chairman, Board of Directors) and Caroline Anyanwu (Deputy Managing Director), all of Diamond Bank Plc for the continued disobedience of the order contained in the judgment of the court delivered since 25th June 2013.

 Onyekachi Umah, Esq., brought his application pursuant to Order 4 Rules 8, Order 4 Rules 9, Order 9 Rules 5 and 13 of the Judgment (Enforcement) Rules, Section 72 of the Sheriffs and Civil Process Act, Order 43 Rules 1, of the FCT High Court Civil Procedure Rules 2018 and under the inherent jurisdiction of the honourable court.

The application was granted on 8th day of August 2018.

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