Anambra lawmaker accuses cousin of blackmail to take over family land


Anambra lawmaker accuses cousin of blackmail to take over family land

By Chris Okeke, Onitsha

A lawmaker in the Anambra State House of Assembly under the platform of Labour Party, LP, representing Onitsha South 11 constituency, Hon. Jude Umennajiego, Wednesday, accused his 79-year-old cousin, Nze Titus Umenzekwe, of blackmailing him as means of gaining cheap popularity to take over their family land at Awarasi Uga community, Aguata Local Government Area.

 Recall that Umenzekwe lodged series of petitions to the Nigeria Police, Public Complaints Commission, Nigeria Bar Association, LP, among others against the LP member accusing him of intimidation, assault, harassment, threat to life and illegal use of the state vigilante group to forcefully dispossess and disinherit him of his landed properties and causing breach of peace in the community.

He said, "Umennajiego is my nephew. Since he became a member of the state House of Assembly, he has been a thorn on our flesh. His father's compound is close to mine and he has continued to encroach on my land and properties that belong to my family because he felt he can intimidate me as a lawmaker. 

"His behaviours have shown that he is a political liability to the State House of Assembly and the Labour Party.I urge the LP to call him to order and also officially restrain his actions especially taming his power drunkenness", he pleaded.

But Umennajiego, in a swift reaction when contacted, denied all the allegations against him, stating that his cousin is a pathological liar who does not want the young ones or anybody to be richer than himself in their family and kindred.

"Nze Titus Umenzekwe was officially removed as the chairman of Awarasi Progressive Union in 1995, and since then he has been fighting me because of the legal aid I offered to members of the community who removed him.

"The problem is that, for years, Umenzekwe has been in the possession of over 100 plots of land that belong to the entire family and he has refused to share it as the tradition demands, thereby disinheriting other family members.

"Umenzekwe's idea is to ensure nobody in the family progresses let alone surpassing him. He employs thugs, locks up his brothers at different police stations, including Nze Innocent Umenzekwe, Cajetan Umenzekwe, Elozona Umenzekwe among others at different times for demanding the share of family inheritance.

"I am a peaceful person, I plead with Umenzekwe to allow peace to reign in the family and community, as well as release the inheritance of his brothers. He is fighting me because I am spearheading the fight for him to release what belongs to others.

"I have no personal interest except to ensure that justice is meted to everyone and given his inheritance. That's all I'm asking. Aside this, I'm a very peaceful person. Any doubting Thomas can get to Uga and ask about Umenzekwe, he goes with anything bad at his age that he is suppose to keep a good legacy worthy of emulation," he stated.

"If I am a political liability as he claimed I would not have defeated my closest rival during the election that brought me to the house with wide margin, more than half of the votes cast," he revealed further.



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