Following the January 12, 2018 Supreme Courts’ affirmation of a Warri High Court judgment delivered in 2006 confirming that a piece/parcel of land measuring 7acres in Ubeji community in Warri South Council Area of Delta State belongs to Dr. Richmond Leigh, elders, landlords and tenants alike are now in a state of confusion as the seven days (7) eviction notice served on all trespassers on the said land by counsel to Dr. Leigh expires today.
Magnificent structures of all shapes and sizes have been built on the said land by the high, mighty and low of Warri society against legal advise from those that knew the history of the land when it was being resold to willing buyers.
Dr. Leigh according to a lawyer who does not want his names in print declined to bulldoze structures already built on the said land when he first won the case at the Warri High Court in 2006 even with a Writ of Possession in sympathy with the trespassers but they allegedly took advantage of his leniency and ran to the Appellate Court, Benin City and failed again before proceeding to the Supreme Court where they were dealt the final blow.
Counsel to Dr. Leigh had stated in the seven days eviction notice that at the expiration of the notice they would take all legal steps to recover the land just as a confidant of Leigh reveal that they would not ever make the mistake this time like they did in 2006.
Investigation reveals that the community leaders have headed to the Palace of the Olu of Warri to wade into the matter, even as counsel to the trespassers are in serious negotiations with counsel to Dr. Leigh to secure a soft landing.
Some affected tenants are making frantic efforts to relocate before the axe of buldozers falls on them to avoid loss of property.
It was learnt through sources that the Palace requested them to wait for the outcome of negotiations from the counsel to both parties before any further steps can be taken in the circumstances.
But some victims of the impending demolition exercise disclosed that they are also exploring some other options, claiming harassment by both those that sold to them and the rightful owner as pronounced by the Supreme Court as they were not told that the land they bought from the community has already been sold to someone else before them.
Other victims however appealed to Dr. Leigh to temper justice with mercy because of the harsh economic situation in the country as they were prepared to play along this time having reached the last bus stop.