- A new generation bank has been directed by a court to pay Prophet Emmanuel Omale N540 million
- Prophet is an Abuja-based cleric and the founder of the Divine Hand of God Prophetic Ministry in the nation's capital
- The court case was instituted in 2020 after the cleric was linked to the former EFCC boss, Ibrahim Magu
FCT, Abuja - A Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court has awarded a N540m judgment against a new generation bank in the N5 billion defamation suit filed by Prophet Emmanuel Omale, Founder of the Divine Hand of God Prophetic Ministry, Abuja.
Justice Yusuf Halilu, the presiding judge, gave the order on Tuesday, October 4.
Omale had filed the suit over the alleged false information that the bank passed to the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) on a “suspicious credit inflow.”
Omale accused the bank of negligently breaching the fiduciary duty of care in its banker-customer relationship with his client.
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A former managing director of the bank had earlier told the Presidential Committee on Audit of Recovered Assets that the bank made an error of posting N573 million into the church’s account.
The committee had accused Ibrahim Magu, former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), of using Omale to launder funds abroad.
However, the bank later clarified that there was a system error that affected Omale’s account but no transfer was made.
In a letter to Omale, the bank expressed regrets and published a public apology in three national newspapers as demanded by Omale’s lawyer.
Omale told the court that the false alarm and summons caused his name to be dragged in the mud in the media which caused him untold hardship, trauma and great financial losses.
He said although the bank owned up in its letter published in three national newspapers, the damage had already been done.
In his judgment, Halilu awarded an aggravated damage of N200 million, special damage of N140,500 million, and N200 million in general damages.
The judge held that:
“The conduct of the defendant in this case, clearly from the evidence that have been made out, is certainly careless and negligent; it is certainly not careless and negligent but unprofessional.”
The judge also cleared Prophet Omale.
How Prophet Omale sued new generation bank in 2020
Legit.ng had earlier reported that the suit marked FCT/HC/CV/2020, was instituted by the prophet; his wife, Deborah Omale; and the church, the Incorporated Trustees of the Divine Hand of God Prophetic Ministry.
The claimant stated that in 2016, the bank falsely reported to the NFIU that N570million was paid into the church’s bank account which caused security agents to put the account under surveillance for four years.
The statement of claim read in part:
“One of the key allegations levelled at the Presidential Investigation Committee against Mr Ibrahim Magu was that the 2nd Claimant (Prophet Omale) fraudulently and corruptly purchased a real estate property for Mr Ibrahim Magu in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates with the said sum of N573, 228, 04 allegedly credited as an inflow into the 1st Claimant’s (church’s) corporate current account No: 1486743019 in the year 2016.”
Magu's report: Prophet Emmanuel Omale files N1billion case in court against news agency
Recall that Prophet Omale had earlier filed a court case against the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) and a reporter with the organisation.
A report by NAN had alleged the cleric bought a landed property worth N573 million in Dubai on behalf of Magu.
In a writ of summons filed by his lawyer, Prophet Omale said he has been damnified and claims jointly and severally against the defendants the sum of N1billion.