Monrovia, Liberia – On Thursday, April 12, 2023, the Chief Executive Officer of CT Com Liberia Limited return to the witness stand to testify on his behalf in the ongoing $7,000,000 lawsuit against Guarantee Trust Bank Liberia Limited (GT-Bank) for the alleged damages for purportedly freezing his business account at the Commercial Court of Liberia.
CEO of CT COM Christopher H. Onunaga stated during his hearing on Thursday that GT- Bank Liberia Limited’s unreasonable action has put his company in danger. He claimed that CT Com Liberia has obligations to a number of local and foreign companies.
The fact that his company relies on credit from the vendor to exist, which he claimed became essential to the day-to-day operations of his business, was proven to be worrisome for him in 2019 and up to the present. He stated this made it difficult for him to run his company.
He made the following statement: “Kailondo Petroleum took serious issues with me and we had back-and-forth discussions that almost resulted in litigation against me.”
In the second part of his evidence on April 12, 2023, CT Com CEO disclosed that the bank’s improper action in freezing CT. Com’s account, which he said was the result of misidentification, crippled his company and caused it to go out of business.
The hearing started in 2022 when Mr. Christopher Hayes Onunaga, the company’s chief executive officer, testified against GT Bank for having frozen his company’s account back in July 2019.
The situation began when the bank seized an account owned by a person named Chris Onanuga, whose name is very different from his as the Chief Executive Officer of CT. Com Liberia Limited. As a result, the company’s account was linked as a result of the names, Mr. Onanuga testified on January 19, 2022.
The Liberian businessman pointed out that the firm needed credit to carry out its everyday operations, like light bills, employee wages, and taxes couldn’t be paid.
According to him, the company was indebted to Kailondo Petroleum, which took serious issue with the company for not paying them something he said almost led to a lawsuit.
He furthered: “Several letters were written us while I was out of the as well as several other companies we were obligated to. With him of our lawyer, close friends, and associates, we averted several litigations including negotiating with vendors on payments time frame “
When asked by the company’s lawyer if the bank was notified about the wrongdoing, the CEO answered by stating that his legal team in the period communicated with the bank and got a response which was attested by him in open court.
Mr. Onunaga noted in his testimony that based on the bank’s refusal to rectify the wrongs, the company’s board resolved in August of 2019 to seek legal redress at the Commercial of Liberia against GT. Bank for Actions of Damages for Wrong.
The lawyer asked: “In your testimony in 2022, you made mentioned a communication to the Ministry of Justice dated December 4, 2019. Were you to see the see copy will you be able to identify it?
In his response Mr. Christopher Hayes Onanuga testified to the document stating “Other efforts were made by the company including reaching the Ministry of Justice who then cleared the company of all wrongdoing; ordering the bank to lift the still order placed on the company’s account by the Monrovia City court but they have refused “
The document presented was then marked as CCP/1 to be used as evidence in the ongoing trial at the Commercial court, along with other documents which he had mentioned in his first testimony; was testified to by the company’s Chief Executive Officer on April 12, 2023.
The defense team, however, started questioning witness Onanuga under the direction of Cllr. Amara Sheriff.
Due to time constraints and the defense team’s inability to respond to all of the questions, the cross-examination, which was supposed to end that day, was postponed to the following day.
Those who preside over the case at the Liberian Commercial Court Judges anticipate continuing to hear the case between CT. Com Liberia Limited and the Guaranty Trust Bank for Action of Damages for Wrong since both parties will receive notice of the assignment in due course.
Reported by: G. Watson Richards