BVN Defaulters Account Freezing: Against The Right To Own A Property — Lawyer Exclaims

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Legitimate experts have being responding to the request by the Federal HighCourt sitting in Abuja, freezing all records in Nigeria banks without a Bank Verification Number (BVN).

By the break request of directive passed on Friday by Justice Nnamdi Dimgba, banks are to stop outward installments or any exchanges in regard of the records without BVN until the point when the substantive application documented by the Federal Government and the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice is heard and dictated by the court.

A Constitutional Lawyer, Silas Joseph Onuh said the BVN for each financial balance holder is lawful as it is an approach of the government and that the central government has the legitimate ideal to make.

As indicated by the lawful professional, the administration strategy comes like bye-laws, and included that, “If the government said you should have a BVN to work a ledger, you should have it to work a record.

“Once that is taken away from you, it means that the right is taken away from you.

“What would have been unlawful is if the federal government had not gone to court and unilaterally freeze accounts without BVN

“They went to court. And the court made the other as they requested, it is proper. There is a law that backed the order made by Justice Dimgba, if not, he won’t have made the order”, Onuh stated while speaking with the Tribune Online.

A protected attorney, Johnmary Chukwukasi Jideobi, in his response said the order for each financial balance holder with any bank to have a BVN is legitimate as the mandate was made in accordance with the administrative influence of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), under the Money Laundering Act.

Jideobi said the BVN is a rule, considered as an auxiliary, which has same power of law like the empowering demonstration, which is the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, by excellence of Section 18(1) of the Interpretation Act.

As indicated by him, “The BVN is lawful, yet whether none consistence will add up to relinquishment is another issue by and large.

“People who are affected can go to court to challenge it because it is a violation to the right to own a property.

“Money is a property and the Federal government cannot go to court to seek an injunction stopping one to own money (property) in bank”, Jideobi told Tribune Online.

Reviewed that Justice Nnamdi Dimgba who gave the request following a movement exparte brought before him by the Federal Government on October 17, 2017 additionally requested banks to reveal any speculation made with stores from accounts without BVN in any item, premium acquired and other important data identified with the exchange made on the records.

The court likewise requested that banks might reveal the names of the records as worked, account numbers, exceptional adjust, domiciliary record and the branch/area of all records without BVN and also unveiling any speculations made with the assets from accounts without BVN.

The court likewise coordinated the CBN and the Nigeria Interbank Settlement Systems (NIBSS) to approve the data contained in the sworn statement of consistence/divulgence recorded by the particular banks inside seven days from the date of administration on the CBN.

Justice Dimgba likewise made a break arrange designating a bank analyst from the pinnacle court to inspect the books of any bank that neglects to consent to the court request to record affirmation of revelation.

“That an interim order is hereby made granting leave to the applicants or any officer authorised by them to advertise the accounts without BVN disclosed by the banks in a widely circulated national newspaper as a notice to any person, corporate body or financial institution who have any interest in any of the said accounts to claim ownership of same within 14 days of the publication of the order and show cause why the proceeds in the account should not be permanently forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria”.

The exparte movement dated September 28, 2017 had, the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice as offended parties/candidates, with Access Bank Plc, CitiBank Nigeria Ltd, Diamond Bank Plc, Ecobank of Nigeria Ltd, Fidelity Bank of Nigeria Plc, First Bank Plc, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, Heritage Bank Plc, First City Monumental Bank Plc, Keystone Bank Nigeria, Skye Bank Plc, Stanbic IBTC Bank Plc, Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria, Sterling Bank Plc, Union Bank of Nigeria Plc, United Bank for Africa Plc, Unity Bank Plc, Wema Bank Plc, Zenith Bank Plc and the CBN as litigants/respondents.

The movement exparte was contended in the interest of the Federal Government by an advice, A. D Tyoden, supplicating the court to give every one of the requests as conceded by Justice Dimgba of the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja.

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