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Family seeks to recover disputed Lekki property from occupants

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The children of a late businessman, Alhaji Afisu Ologolo of Eti-Osa Local Government Area (LGA) are seeking to recover 10.191 hectares (152 plots) of land in Agungi, Lekki from the Ojomu chieftaincy family of Ajiran who are allegedly holding on to it.
  
In a pre-action notice to the new beneficiaries of the property, they claimed that their father bought the property for N6, 000 from the Ojomu family in August 16, 1977.
  
The complainants explained that upon the death of their father in the United Kingdom (UK) on December 21, 1990, the Ojomu family, allegedly partitioned the land into 152 plots and sold same to different buyers.
  
Speaking through their counsel, Mr. Emmanuel Chukwu, the complainants stated that the late Ologolo died at 44, without his wives or nine children, who were still kids, having knowledge of the property, at the time.
  

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The Ojomu family, they claimed, knew that the late Ologolo’s family was unaware of his ownership of the property and took advantage of that to unlawfully sell it off.
  
However, in 2016, Ologolo’s family found in their father’s belongings, documents, including a Deed of Conveyance (with accompanying Survey Plan Number WYF 25 dated August 16, 1977) registered as 85/85/1658 and dated August 29, 1977 in the Lagos land registry.
  
The documents, according to their counsel showed that Ologolo owned and exercised exclusive possession and occupation of the entire 10.191 hectares – which was originally farmland until his death.
  
“The late Ologolo never divested himself of the ownership of the property or any part thereof neither did he authorise anyone to do same on his behalf.
  
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“Upon the demise of Mr. Ologolo and seeing that his children were too young and also unaware of their father’s ownership of the property, some persons without lawful authority of our clients encroached on, appropriated and sold off the property.
  
“We are duly informed by our clients that the Ojomu Chieftaincy family carried out the unlawful and illegal sale of the property.
  
“In the light of the above, we have instructions of our clients to pursue criminal prosecution of all persons involved in this unlawful and illegal action and also seek redress in the court of law,” Chukwu said in a March 4, 2020 letter to the Oba of Ojomu and Ajiran, Tijani Adetunji Akinloye.

When contacted by The Guardian, Oba Akinloye said he was too busy to respond to the claims and promised to get back. But he never did. He also refused to respond to several phone calls made to his mobile number from Friday June 12 till publication time.
  
Beneficiaries of the property are also disputing the claim of being in an unlawful possession. For instance, one of the occupiers of the property, Mr. Rotimi Oderinde, responding to claimants’ vacation demand letter through his counsel, Uche Okoli expressed surprise at the claim.
  
“Our client was extremely surprised to see the letter under reference pasted on the wall of his property on March 5, 2020. Our client is the beneficial owner of the property on which the letter was wrongfully pasted and duly acquired his title from renowned and very credible conveyors/assignor,” Okoli wrote on behalf of his client.

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