First City Monument Bank Ltd (FCMB) got into the new year 2021 with great expectations. In the Bank’s new year message to the public, it remarked:

Since you can’t change what’s happened in 2020, you can at least write a new chapter filled with goals, hope and we’ll be here to ensure every step you take remains EPIC.

Little did the Bank know that its Managing Director, Mr. Adam Nuru, will be facing an EPIC allegation of an adultery scandal at the dawn of the new year.

The short super story

The short super story is that Mr. Nuru is being accused of engaging in adulterous relationship with Ms. Moyo Thomas (a former employee of FCMB) with whom he allegedly had two kids. Moyo’s husband, Tunde Thomas, was said to have recently passed away following the heartbreak he suffered upon learning of the affair and wallowing in the mistaken belief that the kids were his. Moyo was said to have found her way into the US with the kids where she sought asylum, having accused the deceased husband of domestic violence. All these were alleged to have compounded the troubles until the gentle soul of Tunde Thomas (AKA Tunde Gentle) joined his ancestors.

FCMB’s Board of Directors has reportedly swung into action to review the heavy allegations against its MD.

Legal Liabilities

There is nothing under the Criminal Code that criminalises adultery. However, should the investigations reveal that the MD of FCMB is responsible for the allegations leveled, there will be likely consequences flowing from different directions. FCMB will be within its rights to terminate the appointment of the MD after following due process. Of course, the MD of a bank or any company is not an ordinary employee of the company. The MD holds a sort of two-legged directorship position. When removed as the MD under the special procedures provided by law, the person becomes an ordinary director and a further removal as a director also has its own procedures.

The position of the law is that the constitutional right to life of a deceased person can be enforced by his dependants. But it will be an uphill task convincing any court that Mr. Nuru’s alleged affair with Moyo is directly or indirectly responsible for the death of Tunde Thomas.

Aside this, you never can tell with the expansive principles of tortious liability. Mr. Nuru may not be able to escape. But again, the issues seem to be well tied to the personal right of action of the deceased which naturally abates at death.

Whatever the case, the MD of FCMB, Mr. Nuru, has allegedly ‘invested’ in the family of the Late Tunde Thomas and the investment brought big return on investment in the form of two kids. Whether Mr. Nuru will enjoy the fruits of his investment remains to be determined.

Call for DNA Tests

Although the issue of DNA has not arisen in the case of Mr. Nuru, however, as expected, the alleged incident has reignited the call for DNA tests by men to determine the authenticity of their claims to their children. Experts have however explained that DNA tests is not 100% reliable. While we leave the argument to our medical professionals, the law has its own say on DNA.

The Court of Appeal in the case of Anozia v. Nnani [2015] 8 NWLR (Pt. 1461) 241 held that:

The law has always acknowledged the right of a woman to say who the father of her child is, and of course, where a child is born within wedlock, the presumption is conclusive that the child is the seed or product of the marriage.

More so, generally, where the paternity of an adult is in issue, the court cannot order the conduct of a DNA test. This was the position of the Court of Appeal in that case. Mbaba, JCA explained:

DNA, that is, “deoxyribonucleic acid” is a molecule that contains the genetic code of any organism. It is hereditary and has become an euphemism for scientific analysis of genetic constitution to determine one’s roots. I doubt whether that form of proof can be ordered or is necessary to determine the paternity of a 57 year old man who does not complain about his parenthood… I think it is only the 2nd respondent (a mature adult) that can waive his rights and/or seek to compel his parents (or those laying claim to him) to submit to DNA test to prove his root. Of course, where one is a minor (not mature adult) and his paternity is in issue, the court can order the conduct of DNA test, in the overall interest of the child, to ascertain where he belongs.

Featured Image Credit: Nairaland

Stephen Azubuike
Author: Stephen Azubuike
Stephen is a lawyer with expertise in Commercial Dispute Resolution and Technology Law practice. He is a Partner at Infusion Lawyers. He has successfully argued cases from the High Courts of various jurisdictions to the Appellate Courts on behalf of financial institutions, other corporate bodies and multinationals. He has worked with a number of startup tech companies. He tweets @siazubuike.


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