Anambra: 1000 protest encroachment on their land despite supreme court judgement...urge Soludo to intervene

Anambra: 1000 protest encroachment on their land despite supreme court judgement...urge Soludo to intervene 

By Chinwe Nwacha, Onitsha

No fewer than 1000 people of  Umuenu Umuawulu community, Awka South Local Government Area, Anambra State, on weekend at their community hall, protested alleged encroachment on their ancestorial land called Agu Udo/Agu Ofu land, by a neighbouring community, Abo Ani Awgbu, country home of the Chief of Staff to Governor Charles Chukwuma Soludo', Chief Ernest Ezeajughi, Orumba North Local Government Area, of the State.

Some of the protesters carried placards with the inscriptions, "Governor Soludo come to our rescue, Abo Ani encroached on our land, we have supreme court judgment in our favor on the land, Gov. Soludo intervene before they take over our land, we have no other land where we cultivate except the disputed land", among others.

Addressing newsmen during the protest, the spokesperson of the protesters and former chairman of Umuenu Amuawulu community, Chief Humphrey Obi, recalled how the land dispute started and how Umuenu won all the three court cases that included the Supreme court against Abo Ani Awgbu community.

He said that not being satisfied with the three court judgments, the Abo Ani people proceeded to Anambra State Boundary Commission headed by the Deputy Governor, His Excellency, Onyekachukwu Ibezim, where they demanded for the demarcation of the disputed land.

"At the Commission we insisted that we are the owner of the land and also believe that the judgment of the Supreme court must be adhered to since it is still an extant law.

"Funny enough, our brother Enugwu community Umuawulu supported Abo Ani and bear witness against us that Abo Ani owned the land in the court and now made U-turn and claimed that the land belongs to them, Enugwuu a claim which showed that they are being backed up by some powerful forces.

"It is the secred duty of Anambra State Boundary committee to follow and apply the said demarcation as judiciously fixed to accord with judicial fixed boundary, as anything short of that will not only amount to Anambra State Boundary committee reviewing, reversing the judgment of competent court but will amount to stretch contempt of court," he warned.

In a petition by the President and secretary of Umuenu Umuawulu, Nze Okoye Godwin and Mr. Nwafor Tochukwu, respectively to Governor Soludo, they reminded him of his belief in the supremacy of law stating that as such should not allow any influence from any quarters to cede the land or part of it to both Abo Ani Awgbu and Enugwu Umuawulu as they were encroachers stopped by the courts of the land.

Reiterating the danger inherent in ceding the land to the unauthorized communities, the duo urged Governor Soludo to rather invite the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice to interprete to them the implication of disobeying court order.

Among those that spoke during the protest included, Tochukwu Okoye, aged 94 years, said "I am surprised that someone that signed witness for another now claims to be the owner of the land, let's just think twice. I am calling on Soludo as a peaceful man to intervene in this situation."

Chief Johnson Anazonwu Nwafor, 88 years, stated, "I was cultivating with my father in that land when I was a child, I know everywhere there. We have no case with Enugwu in that land only Awgbu people. Our village is a peaceful village if not blood would have been shedded in that land due to what they are doing to us". 

Mr. Roseline Adobe, a widow, added, "I cultivated yam, cassava, among others but they destroyed all my crops, seized my hoe, knife. That is the only place I feed my children from."

According to Mrs Susan Nwaeke Ogbunike, "They stormed in the farm where we are cultivating, chased us away, leveled all my farm, destroyed all my crops and as the result of that my BP rose which I started suffering it till today. Governor Soludo, we are calling you to come and help us".

Mrs Chinwendu Nwanaka, a widow, "I was on my way to get something in my farm and someone told me that all we cultivated were destroyed, yam, cassava, cocoyam, when I got there I couldn't get anything, I started shadding tears that no one could help"

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