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CLAIMANTS, COLONEL TUSSLE OVER DISPUTED PROPERTY

By NBF NEWS
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Two claimants, Mr. Oghoyone Ufuoma and Mrs. Ufuoma have filed a legal action before a Lagos High Court in Ikorodu against Colonel Dele Kuti, following a dispute on the ownership of a vast expanse of land in Odogunyan, Ikorodu, Lagos.

In a suit before Justice Habeeb Abiru, the couple had also joined Liadi Jimoh (for himself and on behalf of the Olodugba Descendants family), the Ministry of Agriculture Lagos State and Persons Unknown as co-defendants to the suit.

The claimants had alleged that they purchased the land from Odogunyan family, saying that the family was the original owner of the land before it was acquired by the Lagos State Government in 1985 just as they claimed that they derived their title to the land from the family.

The couple also claimed that the property did not belong to any of the defendants or the defendants' predecessor in title.

The claimants also alleged that Kuti (the second defendant) hinged his defence on a false title, claiming that he used his position as an army officer to use soldiers to drive them away from the propery.

They further claimed that Kuti entered the disputed property by force, alleging that he broke into the fence and destroyed the foundation and the iron gate erected by them.

They added that the second defendant marked the unbroken part of the fence 'military zone,' claiming that he stationed soldiers on the property as evidenced by the video recording and digital photographs attached to the application before the court.

But Kuti had faulted the allegations of the claimants in his written statement on oaths.

The Colonel further alleged that before entering into the land agreement, he made a thorough investigation to ascertain the true owner of the land, saying that his investigation revealed that the first defendant family (Oludugba family) was the rightful owner of the disputed land.

He added that the purchase and transfer of the property to him by the first defendant was lawful, saying that the action was based on the excision of the land by the Lagos State Government through the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperative to the Oludugba family.

He also claimed that the said Oludugba family put him into possession of the disputed property in June 2003, saying that he immediately took possession and commenced construction without hindrance.

According to Kuti, the name of Odogunyan family is non- existing but a fabrication by the claimants to mislead the general public.

Justice Abiru has adjourned the case till April 27.