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Nov 12, 2018

Choice Bank’s Lawsuit against G.O.B. Moves Forward in Court

Earlier this year, Choice Bank Limited launched a lawsuit against the Minister of Finance as the first defendant, Central Bank, and the Attorney General as the second and third defendant. The suit was filed after Prime Minister Dean Barrow, on the recommendation of the Central Bank, revoked Choice Bank’s international banking license.  In April, it was reported that the bank was winding down its operations after experiencing a liquidity crisis.  In June, Choice Bank notified its clients that they will be able to withdraw up to twenty-five thousand U.S. dollars from their accounts. That was made impossible after G.O.B. revoked its license, triggering the lawsuit. According to Choice Bank, the decision to suspend its international banking license was improper.  The decision is being appealed with the Central’s Bank’s appeal board while the matter is before the courts so today, when the matter came before Justice Courtenay Abel, Central Bank’s attorneys filed an application to have the case management orders stayed until a decision is made by the appeal board. Justice Abel rejected the application and allowed the matter to proceed to case management. Senior Counsel, Eamon Courtenay represented Choice Bank Limited.


Eamon Courtenay

Eamon Courtenay, Attorney

“The Central Bank applied to stay the proceedings because they said that we had appealed to the appeal board and that it should wait the outcome of the appeal board decision. We opposed that application and the judged ruled in our favor and said that he will proceed with making directions. So that the procedural directions for the case have been made and we are to filed our affidavits and disclosure during December and then we come back come back to the court in late January for the court to make further determination at that stage as to how the matter will be tried.”


Hipolito Novelo

“On what basis did Justice Abel made his decision?”


Eamon Courtenay

“Well he felt that, first of all, the revocation of a license of a bank is a very important matter and to be dealt with urgently. So he wanted us to proceed as quickly as we could to bring the case to readiness for trial. If the appeal board rules in one way then it may have an effect on the trial. If it rules in another way, it may also have an effect but there will be still be a trial regardless of what the appeal board rules, So he thought he should make the case management decisions in order to expedite the trial.”


The matter was adjourned to January thirtieth, 2019.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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