An FCT High Court Maitama on Friday ordered a land agent Innocent Effiong to refund a sum of N10 million to one Group Capt. A. A. Adeniyi for a failed land contract.
Justice Jude Okeke gave the order in a judgment he delivered on a counter claim filed by Adeniyi on Oct. 9, 2017.
Okeke held that Adeniyi had made out a case to justify the grounds of his reliefs.
The judge added that the court gave opportunity to the agent to defend himself but he never did nor led evidence to contradict the evidence of the counter claimant .
He expressed his satisfaction with exhibits provided by the counter claimant which showed how the purported land documents were handed over to him by the defendant.
“There is no evidence placed before the court by the defendant showing that the right of occupancy was actually issued and executed by the real owner in favour of the counter claimant.
“No evidence in denial of the testimony of the counter claimant that he paid a sum of N10 million to the defendant and he failed deliver the property to him” he held.
Okeke also held that in such circumstances the court does not have any bases to doubt the evidence of the counter claimant and have to accept it as the truth.
“In the light of the foregoing findings the court holds the counter claimant is entitled to a refund of the said N10 million he paid to the defendant for a consideration that never was.
“The defendant is ordered to pay to the counter claimant the sum of N10 million being money paid to him for the sale of a plot at Jahi District of Abuja which he did not pass title to the counter claimant ” he ordered.
Okeke noted that the defendant was the first to institute a suit before the court claiming that he was being harassed by the counter claimant and three others.
He added that in reply Adeniyi filed a counter claim explaining what happened.
Okeke noted that from the evidence before the court Effiong had sold to Adeniyi a plot of land at Jahi District of Abuja for a sum of N10 million.
He added that the said sum was paid by Adeniyi to Effiong with a Mitsubishi brand new pick van valued for N9. 5 million and cash of N500, 000.
Okeke noted that the land was covered by a right of occupancy with the name of one Emmanuel Yepwi-Kyauta and was dated Jan. 9, 2016 .
He added that the defendant drew up a deed of assignment and power of attorney and claimed it was executed by Yepwi -Kyauta and was signed by him as a witness.
Okeke noted that from the evidence before the court that Adeniyi visited the Abuja Geographical Information System , to verify the land.
He added that Adeniyi discovered that the signature in the deed of assignment and power of attorney handed over to him does not tally with that in the official records for the said property.
He noted further that all efforts made by Adeniyi to get to Effiong to explain , failed and he then reported him to the Police.
Okeke added that Police investigations revealed that Effiong also handed over to one other person the same right of occupancy in respect to the same land .