Multiple applications before higher courts are frustrating the speedy trial of high-profile debtors, the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) has said.
“It is not easy because they have perfected the art of going to court. They are scared of fulfilling their responsibilities; they are the ones that can easily personalise the issues and official function of debt recovery; they believe that people must have a motive for doing what they do. Clearly, if you’re not listening to what they want, you are opposing them. So it has not been easy. But I can tell you also that we are determined, and the government also is very determined that these monies have to be recovered even if it has to lead to an amendment of the AMCON Act,” MD/CEO, Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON), Mr. Ahmed Kuru, told The Guardian.
The paper said that information at its disposal revealed that 10 of such individuals, popularly referred to as “big boys”, are collectively owing the government about N1 trillion, which is about 17 per cent of the N6 trillion 2016 national budget.
Prominent among ‘big boys’ facing debt trials are renowned businessmen, Mr. Femi Otedola, Alhaji Sayyu Dantata, Dr. Wale Babalakin, Sir Johnson Arumemi-Ikhide, Mrs Elizabeth Ebi, and former Minister of Power, Prof. Bart Nnaji.
“Obligors in court just want to buy time to continue to live with their lifestyles, which is more important to them than paying up their debts,” Kuru told the paper.