Former captain of the Nigerian Super Eagles, Joseph Yobo, has secured an interim order against erstwhile President of a Turkish Sport Club, Fenerbahce SK, Aziz Yildirim; a Turkish company, Dearsan Corporations, its Director, Murat Gordi, and the Nigerian Navy over alleged breach of contract.
The order made by Justice Hamza Muazu of the High Court in Abuja restrained the Nigerian Navy and the Chief of Naval Staff from further paying into the accounts of Dearsan Corporations, its Directors, Aziz Yildirim and Murat Gordi, any monies and funds consequent upon any form of contractual obligation except 10 percent of such payment is made into the Escrow account nominated by the Chief Registrar of the court pending the hearing and determination of the suit filed by Yobo.
The court made the order while ruling on the application brought by the former Eagle captain in suit number: FCT/HC/CV/7452/2023 and motion No: FCT/HC/M/13044/2023 filed against Dearsan Corporations, its Directors, Aziz Yildirim and Murat Gordi, and the Nigerian Navy over a case of breach of contract.
In the suit, the former captain of the Super Eagles and international businessman is claiming his entitlement to commission due to him for introducing Dearsan Corporation into the Nigerian market and facilitating business relations with the Nigerian Navy as a result of which the Turkish company has been awarded multi-billion naira contracts.
Dispute has arisen following Dearsan’s failure to pay to Yobo his fair and reasonable remuneration for his role in introducing and facilitating their entry and eventual business success with the Nigeria Navy. Dearsan had in correspondences with the Nigerian Navy introduced and held out Yobo as their representative in Nigeria following his role as the agent that introduced them to the Nigerian entity.
The claimant, (Joseph Yobo) had through his team of lawyers led by Chief Bolaji Ayorinde (SAN) approached the court seeking a declaration that having successfully introduced the first to third defendants to the Nigerian market and facilitated business relations leading to the contractual agreement on or about June 6, 2023, he is entitled to not less than 10 percent of any amount received and/or to be received for dealings with the Nigerian Navy and/or any Nigerian entity.
He also sought for an order compelling the defendants to produce before the court a “statement on oath” deposing to all amounts paid by the fourth and fifth defendants and recovered by the 1st, 2nd and 3rd defendants in respect to any contractual transaction between the 1st, 2nd and 3rd defendants and the 4th and 5th defendants before, on or after June 6, 2023, within seven day.
The claimant also prayed the court for an Order of Perpetual Injunction restraining the 4th and 5th defendants from paying to and/or further paying to the 1st to 3rd defendants any monies and funds consequent upon any form of contractual obligation except 10 percent of such payment is made directly to the claimants by the 4th and 5th defendants.
Consequent upon the order of the court, the Chief Registrar of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory had by a letter dated November 14, 2023, nominated an interest yielding account for the deposit of the 10 percent while requesting that his office to be furnished with evidence of any deposit into the escrow account for record purposes.
It has also been confirmed that all the court processes in the suit, order of the court, and the letter of the Chief Registrar nominating the interest yielding account have all been duly served and brought to the attention of the Nigerian Navy and the Chief of Naval Staff with relevant proves of service.
However, despite the existing order of the court and service on them, the Nigerian Navy and Chief of Naval Staff are yet to confirm whether they have complied with the order of the court and no payment of the deducted 10 percent has been remitted to the escrow account in obedience to the order of the court.
With this alleged disobedience or non-compliance with court order, the case may take another twist leading to contempt charges against the Chief of Naval Staff.
The case is also eroding the corporate image and damaging business standing of Dearsan in Nigeria, and may lead to loss of future contracts in view of its failure to honour basic contractual undertaking, which is key in all commercial agreements.