10th June, 2010
A Lagos businessman, Prince Dele Ajiboye, in an application filed before an Apapa Chief Magistrateâ€™s Court by his lawyer, Barrister Rasaq O. Abudu, has urged the court to compel three businessmen, Ojukwu Chukwuneyen, Chidi Chukwuneyen, Engineer Ambrose Chukwuneyen and their company, Cool Penny Nigeria Limited, to show cause why they should not be bound over for destroying his property.
In an affidavit, Ajiboye, averred that he is the owner of 13 acres of land situated at kilometre 12-13 in Ijegun Egba/Ibasa village, Lagos and that the said acres of land, according to him, was leased to him by the lawful accredited representatives of the Alagbo Agbojo family.
Ajiboye averred further that since the land was leased to him, he has been in peaceful possession without any hindrance from any person until sometime in 1994, when a group of people started to trespass on it, claiming to have purchased same from the Alagbo Agbojo family.
Thereafter, he said he instituted a suit number ID/697/94, against Messrs. Adisa Olaewe, Oseni Suberu and others, who claimed to have derived their title from the Alagbo Agbojo family. The court then granted his injuction restraining the defendants and their agents from further trespass on his land.
However, the applicant alleged further that the courtâ€™s order notwithstanding, in 2001, the respondents, Ojukwu Chukwuneyen, Chidi Chukwuneyen, Engineer Ambrose Chukwuneyen, Cool Remmy Company and some other people, trespassed on some part of the land, consequent upon which he filed an action against them.
In suit number ID/251/2001, Prince Dele Ajiboye versus Innocent Osunmo and others, the court also restrained them from trespassing on the said land.
Since the service of the injunction on all the defendants, there was no further encroachment until recently, when it was discovered that the respondents and their company were trying to obtain a Certificate of Occupancy of the said land.
Relying on Supreme Courtâ€™s decision that where a Certificate of Occupancy is obtained on a land from a wrong hand, such certificate of occupancy is null and void and that where a case is pending in court, any act done on the subject matter of the suit pending is void, consequently any party who had been served with motion for an injunction must not take step on the subject matter.
The applicant, while citing and relying on the authority of Abubakar versus Unipetrol and Ojukwu versus Lagos State Government 1985, the Nigerian Weekly Law Report cautioned the respondents not to embark on unlawful act.
Therefore, the applicant contended that unless the respondents are bound over by the court, they may carry out their threat.
The applicant alleged that on 11 February, 2010, he narrowly escaped death when thugs invaded his land and destroyed his property worth about N20 million, adding that going by the spate of extra judicial killings and assassination in the country in recent times, the respondentsâ€™ threat cannot be easily ignored or disregarded.