Metropolitan Plaza Hotel, situated on Broad Street, Monrovia, was last Thursday shut down by the Commercial Court for defaulting on a US$51,740 loan from Global Bank-Liberia Limited.
The hotel’s closure was a result of the final judgment entered against the hotel by the court on November 13, 2013.
The bank said it loaned or guaranteed Metropolitan Plaza US$99,000 before the lawsuit, of which US$51,740 is still owned by the company.
A.N. Charifz, general manager of the hotel and loan guarantor, was nowhere to be found when the court’s officers went to close it down following a “Writ of Execution” issued by Resident Chief Judge Eva Mappy Morgan, last Thursday.
In the execution order, Judge Morgan instructed her court officers that, “If Charifz fails to comply with the order, they should arrest him for contempt of court consistent with 1LCL Revised Chapter 44- enforcement of judgment and orders.”
The court further ordered Charifz to pay Global Bank the sum of money necessary to satisfy the judgment adding that “if the money that would be realized from sale of the company’s properties is not sufficient to pay the reasonable expenses, then seize the real properties until it shall have raised the sum of US$51,740.”
Judge Morgan also instructed court officers to seize and expose for sale land, goods and chattels of the management of Metropolitan Plaza Hotel.”
Immediately, after the sudden closure of the hotel, an employee was heard phoning his fellow workers shouting,” Oh, guys the government has closed the hotel. We and our customers have been left in the cold, especially in this festive Season,”
According to financial experts, non-payment on bank loans by business institutions could jeopardize the entire financial system of the country, especially in the post- Ebola recovery period.
In August 2013, Global Bank Liberia Limited filed a case in the Commercial Court to recover US$99,000 from Metropolitan Plaza in unpaid loans and interests due the bank.
After the company was sued for non-payment, the court ruled on November 3, 2013 that the company was not paying the US$99,000 loan in compliance with the agreement and authorized the bank to sell the company’s mortgaged properties to recover the outstanding debts.
The court at the time also ordered the company to settle the outstanding debt within a few months, which it failed to do up to the hotel’s closure last Thursday.