Enugu State High Court, on Wednesday, fixed Sept.14 for pre-trial hearing over disputed 7.5-hectare of land donated by people of Amechi Awkunanaw community for defunct Satellite Printing Press, Enugu.
The case is between Sen. Jim Nwobodo, former Governor of Old Anambra, who is the plaintiff, and defendants, which included: traditional ruler of the community, Igwe Anthony Okorie, community’s President-General, Chief John Egbo, retired Justice Eddy Onyia etc.
Justice K.I. Okpe in a ruling directed both counsels for the plaintiff and defendants to prepare for the pre-trial.
“Before Sept. 14, I urge you all to file all affidavits, petitions and motions relating to the case as we move ahead with the pre-trial,” Okpe said.
Earlier, the counsel to the plaintiff, Mr B.C. Nwobodo, said that he had sent a pre-trial notice to the counsel of the defendants and appealed to the court to sit within the period of its annual vacation.
He said: “They do not have a right for course of action over the land in dispute after 40 years, since 1981 the government took possession of the land.
“I must notify the court that their argument that the land is being sold is baseless as there is no evidence to that effect and my client had maintained status quo as ordered by the court”.
The counsel to the defendants, Prof. Ilochi Okafor (SAN) represented by Mr R.C. Madu, told the court that the plaintiff had already started demarcating and selling the land in dispute against the order of the court.
“My Lord, we are here to file an additional motion to stop the plaintiff or his agents from continue sales of the disputed land even before the commencement of the pre-trial,” he said.