N81bn debt: We are not indebted to AMCON —MRS

MRS Holdings Limited has denied being indebted to Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) to the tune of N81billion.

This was contained in a statement issued by the management of the company in Lagos on Tuesday.

The statement reads in part, “Our attention has been drawn to a recent publication by the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria alleging that MRS Holdings Limited is indebted to it in the sum of N81 billion and that the corporation has instituted Suit No: FHC/L/CP/923/2016 to wind up the company over the inability of MRS to pay the alleged debt.

“MRS challenges in the strongest possible terms the false claim by AMCON that MRS is indebted to AMCON in the sum of N81 billion or any sum at all.”

According to MRS, the correct position is that the company obtained a loan from a consortium of banks in Nigeria for a viable project, which AMCON later took over.

It added, “However, it became clear to AMCON that MRS was paying down on the loan and agreed to restructure the loan on agreed terms of N74 Billion. The said debt has since been fully settled. The terms of settlement was entered as Judgment of Court on 29 June 2015, in Suit No FHC/L/CS/1365/2015.

“MRS is shocked that in spite of having fully settled the debt, AMCON has decided to re-litigate an already concluded matter. MRS Holdings Limited understands AMCON’s statutory function to recover debts but by no stretch can this mean harassment of companies.

“AMCON has declared a new aggressive debt recovery drive. MRS has no problem with that but this does not give AMCON a licence to embarrass and harass companies. It is not a crime to obtain loans for viable projects. Execution of viable projects leads to job creation and growth of the economy.

“However, when companies obtain loans for legitimate businesses (and) are being harassed and embarrassed in the name of aggressive debt recovery, it signals danger for economy growth.”

The company added that it was taking legal advice to clear its good name and bring necessary actions to seek damages for the embarrassment and damage caused the Company’s reputation and goodwill by AMCON’s publication and action.

It also assured all its customers and business associates that the report would not affect the company and its subsidiaries’ high quality services for which it had always been known and would seek redress for the damages caused by the publication.

“MRS further assures the general public that MRS Holdings Limited and its subsidiaries will continue to transact their businesses with the highest ethical standards and in accordance with the extant laws of the country,” the statement said.