The Union of Commerce, Industry and Finance workers (UNICOF) after months of a legal tussle with the Agricultural Development Bank (ADB), over the sale of it’s shares on the Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE) has thrown in the towel.
UNICOF this morning Wednesday 19th August, 2015 withdrew the case it filed against the bank at the Supreme court over its Initial Public Offer (IPO).
UNICOF which gave no reasons for the withdrawal dragged ADB to the Supreme court early this month barely 24 hours after an Accra high court threw out their earlier case against the bank seeking to place an injunction on its Initial Public Offer (IPO).
Case filed by UNICOF
The suit which was cited by Citi Business News sought an order of interlocutory injunction to restrain the defendant ADB, their agents, assigns, privies and or contractors from proceeding with continuing, or resuming the sale of the shares of the bank pending final determination of the suit filed at the court.
The motion for an order of interlocutory injunction had ADB as the 1st defendant and the Attorney General and minister of Justice as the 2nd defendant.
According to UNICOF, the 1st Defendant which is ADB, failed to follow due process in preparing a prospectus to list on the Ghana Stock Exchange and sell more than 74 million existing shares with plans to issue more than 75 million additional shares.
UNICOF also accused ADB’s management of perpetuating an illegality by signing two memoranda of understanding with two foreign companies for the allotment of a number of shares to those companies.
The Union said the two agreements signed by ADB and the Norwegian Fund for Developing Countries to offer them 15% of the shares and Atlas Mara having acquired 25% respectively did not receive Parliamentary approval as an international transaction.
UNICOF also wanted the Supreme Court to declare as unconstitutional the moves by ADB to list on the bourse and sell 40% of the company to foreign companies.
It also wanted ADB to be restrained from going on with the IPO till the court case was concluded.
Unicof makes U-Turn
But in a rather interesting turn of events lawyer for UNICOF today announced in court it had withdrawn the suit and cited no reasons for the move.
But lawyer for ADB Tony Lithur and that of the Attorney General Afriyie Ansah prayed the court to award 5 thousand cedis each for damages to their clients.
According to Tony Lithur UNICOF’s action was in bad faith and had wasted the time of all those involved in the case.
He further argued that UNICOF’s action will affect the success of the bank’s IPO and also caused the bank to lose a number of its customers.
Supreme court ruling
The Supreme court ruled that UNICOF cannot ever file such a case before the court following its withdrawal of the case and awarded the two defendant’s which is the bank and the AG five thousand cedis each.
ADB was forced to put the IPO on hold in July this year follows UNICOF’s suit.
But the Head of Legal and General Counsel at ADB Maxwell Kofi Amoakohene told Citi Business News the bank will immediately resume the IPO following the ruling.