The Full Bench of the Supreme Court has ordered the Civil Law Court to put on sale assets of Israel Akinsanya, the former vice President for Public Affairs of the National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL) in favor of the International Bank Liberia Limited (IB), a local commercial bank, after denying Akinsanya’s appeal.
Associate Justice Philip A.Z. Banks, who delivered the opinion on behalf of his colleagues, explained that Mr. Akinsanya failed to meet the requirement of the law, due to his failure to complete his appeal process against the 2013 ruling of Judge Boima Kontoe of the Civil Law Court to the High Court.
Justice Banks further ruled that Mr. Akinsanya’s decision put the High Court in a situation which deprives it of the required jurisdiction to probe the merits of his appeal.
Akinsanya’s appeal stemmed from Judge Kontoe’s ruling holding him liable and authorized Akinsanya to pay US$904,084.62 plus 10 percent of attorney fees and all other costs related to the case, which he summed up to US$1,050,238.16 and L$13,470 respectively.
Further, Judge Kontoe said, “If Akinsanya did not satisfy the judgment within the statutory prescribed time, meaning a month after his decision, the mortgaged property would be designated for sale to allow the bank to recover its loan and other fees including interest, legal and court fees.”
The assets to be sold include Mr. Akinsanya’s dwelling home off the ELWA-Robertsfield Highway and his family home on 16th Street, Sinkor.
To make matters worse for Mr. Akinsanya, the Civil Law Court has posted a notice on all of the buildings at the Temple of Justice regarding its decision to sell his assets.
The document partly reads, “The property of Mr. Israel Akinsanya will be sold to the highest bidders at a public auction on the grounds of the Temple of Justice on the October 24, 2015.”
Prior to the court’s action, lawyers representing the bank filed a petition for foreclosure of mortgage against Mr. Akinsanya‘s company, SIRR Marketing, for the recovery of an amount of US$350,000 together with the interest, attorney and penalty fees.
Foreclosure of mortgage is a legal process in which a lender attempts to recover the balance of a loan from a borrower who has stopped making payment to the lender by forcing the sale of the asset used as the collateral for the loan.
According to the bank, Mr. Akinsanya through his SIRR Marketing Company, executed a loan agreement, which IB on May 18, 2010, loaned him the amount of US$350,000 payable along with accrued interest on September 18, 2011.
In that agreement, Akinsanya used his assets as collateral to secure the loan.
Unfortunately, the bank said, Akinsanya failed to honor payment schedules agreed upon with the bank since he took the loan.
As part of the agreement, the bank claimed that Akinsanya was to pay two percent per year on the loan, in the case of a default.
Akinsanya also agreed to pay 15 percent of the total amount including attorney fees and the cost of cancellation in the event of a court action.