Fri. Oct 22nd, 2021

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Tinubu Takes Over Lands, Houses In Surulere

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At the termination of the strict legal battle, the family of the late Efunroye Tinubu has been availed with the nontransferable right to a parcel of land, including 50 houses at Akobi Crescent, Fashoro Lane, Surulere area of Lagos.

The decision reached last week by the court was said to have necessitated the taking over of a land as big as 8.994 acres, without any resistance.

One Tunde Oyedele, a retired Colonel was said to have challenged the right of Tinubu’s family to the land in court. He filed a suit numbering M/294/2010, The suit sought the court to make him the sole administrator of the land.

He was never successful though, since the claim was dismissed in 2013, thrown out at the advantage of Tinubu’s family. There was no timely appeal too from the end of the appellant.

The development which availed the Tinubus with the privilege to take over the land and the over 50 houses constructed on it, can be so interesting.

In consonance with his case, Oyedele had in his evidence told the court through two depositions dated 23/06/11 and 11/07/11 marked as Exhibits 1 and 2 respectively, that he was the owner of the vast area of land measuring 8.994 acres lying at Akobi Crescent, Off Fashoro Lane, Surulere in the Surulere Local Government Area of Lagos State which is covered by a Deed of Conveyance dated 03/02/1976 and registered as NO: 98 at page 98 in Volume 2263 at the Lands Registry Lagos.

Oyedele confessed to have bought the land from Iyalode Tinubu’s family, through one Garuba Bakare of Agbole Tinubu, Ojokodo Abeokuta. This Garuba has according to the appellant served as the representative of the vendor family, adding that it was one of the consignments to Madam Efunroye Tinubu in time past, under native law and customs.

He averred that late Efunroye Tinubu enjoyed undisputed possession of the land and exercised undisputed ownership on it, adding that at all times material to the death of his vendor, and thereafter, Garuba Bakare was the head of the Tinubu family.

He averred that late Efunroye Tinubu enjoyed undisputed possession of the land and exercised undisputed ownership on it, adding that at all times material to the death of his vendor, and thereafter, Garuba Bakare was the head of the Tinubu family.

He said that upon the demise of Iyalode Tinubu, the appointment of Garuba Bakare as the Head of the Tinubu Family was affirmed by the Supreme Court in Suit NO: M/35/1955 and he was appointed as the sole administrator of the Estate of the late Iyalode Tinubu until new trustees were appointed.

He claimed further that the Supreme Court judgement was subsequently re-affirmed by an order of the High Court of Lagos made on 03/08/1965 in Suit NO: M/3/1965 wherein Garuba Bakare was appointed the Head of the Tinubu Family and seven other persons were made trustees over the estate.

However in his ruling, Justice Atinuke Ipaye of the Lagos State High Court sitting in Ikeja, dismissed the claimant’s arguments, holding that, “I am satisfied that the counter-claimants have established their clear and exclusive possession of the subject property as shown on Exhibits 21(a) (g), 29, and 30.

“Under cross-examination, since Colonel Tunde Oyedele allegedly purchased the subject matter in 1967, he did not erect any dwelling house or other structure on it, he also admitted that he has never alienated, sold or leased any portion of it to third parties. That no street on the large expanse of land has been named after him. Equally, he was unable to state how much he alleged spent in his construction of the perimeter fence he allegedly constructed round the almost 9 acres of the land.

“He was unable to bring forward the builder of the said fence or show receipts of evidencing purchase of building materials for such an extensive construction. Equally, he was unable to mention the name and or whereabouts of the persons he allegedly placed on the land to weed same.

“All this tend to show that at no material time was the defendant to counterclaim ever in possession of the said subject property and I so hold. I believe the testimony of DW1 and DW 2, which I find credible that they are members of the Tinubu Family and have remained in possession of same from time immemorial.

“The court hereby declare the sale of 8.998 acres of land by Garuba Bakare to the claimant, (Colonel Tunde Oyedele) as evidence by the Deed of Conveyance dated 3rd of February 1976 as invalid null and void. Also the deed of conveyance dated 03/02/76 registered as NO: 98 at page 98 in volume 2263 is hereby been revoked.

“Lastly the court hereby award the sum of one hundred thousand Naira to the defendant as general damages for the claimant’s unlawful invasion and trespass to the defendant land in Idi Oro, Surulere, Lagos.”

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