Court fines FG N175m for illegal acquisition of land

July 5, 2021
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An Ondo High Court, sitting in Akure has ruled against the acquisition of 20 hectares of land by the Federal Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs for the building of Skill acquisition Center in Agadagba-Obon in Eseodo Local Government Area of Ondo State.

Presiding over the suit, Justice Peter Ikujuni, held that the Federal Government erred in acquiring the land belonging to the Kekemeke family in Agadagba Obon, without following the due process of the law.

The Federal Government through the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs had in 2013 acquired the land of the Kekemeke family for the building of Skill Acquisition Center without paying compensation to the family and without following the due process for such acquisition.

Irked by the development, the Kekemeke family approached Court in 2013 to challenge the State and Federal Government over the illegal acquisition of their family land.

The family, represented by their lawyer, Mr Oju Kekemeke filed suit No: HOK/31/2013 challenging both the State and Federal Government for illegal acquisition of family land.

The Suit challenged the legality and validity of the purported acquisition of the approximately 20 hectares of land at Agadagba Obon, where the Federal Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs has built a Skill Acquisition Centre.

However, eight years after the suit was instituted, and the hearing of the evidence, the Court formulated three issues for determination which included whether the Claimants proved their title to the land in dispute.

Also, it asked whether the defendants showed that it followed due process in its acquisition of the said land and whether the Claimants are entitled to all their reliefs.

While Oju Kekemeke represented the Claimants, Mr Isyaku Saleh, represented the Federal Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs.

In its verdict, the Court agreed with the Kekemeke family that “the issue of Federal Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs’ acquisition of the land in dispute looks like a case of “wuruwuru to the answer” in Nigerian social parlance.

The Court, however, resolved all three issues in favour of the Claimants and ordered that the sum of N175million to be paid to the Kekemeke family by the Federal Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs as the open market value and amount due to the Claimants as the owner of the said land in Agadagba-Obon.

Apart from this, the Court also ordered that 10 per cent interest per annum be paid on the judgment by Defendant from the date of judgment until the judgment is liquidated.

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CLAIM: A Twitter user claims that the Arab League of Nations sent a warning message to the Nigerian government on the Biafra movement.Court fines FG N175m for illegal acquisition of land

Court fines FG N175m for illegal acquisition of land

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