Magnus Eze, Enugu
Enugu State High Court has ordered the Police, the Army and the Department of State Security out of a portion of land allegedly belonging to Obeagu Awkunanaw and Amechi Uwani Awkunanaw communities in Enugu South Local Government Area.
Ruling in an ex-parte motion filed by the applicants, Chief Ikechukwu Agbo, Chief Reuben Okafor, and four others on behalf of members of Obeagu Awkunanaw community and Amechi Uwani Akwunanaw, Justice N.N. Neboh ordered that all actions of the respondents, especially the Nigerian Army and Nigeria Police with respect to the complaint of the applicants be stayed pending the determination of the motion on notice before the court.
Others joined in the suit are Private Estate West Africa Ltd, Mr Kingsley Eze, Mr Ugochukwu Mbachu Chamberlin, Dr Festus Uzoh and Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps.
The applicants in suit number E/1148/2019 averred that “the 1st to 4th respondents who are not from the applicants’ community had in an ignoble manner purported to have acquired the ancestral homes and landed property of the applicants without complying with the provisions of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and hence started trespassing on the applicants’ ancestral homes/landed property using the Nigeria Police and Army to arrest, torture and detain members of the applicants’ communities seen on their ancestral farm land, farming to earn a living.”
Also, they are seeking declaration of the court that the applicants are entitled to their personal liberty as enshrined in Section 35 of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria as altered in 2011.