*Again, Nigerian Army Defiles Court Orders, sells Kelebe-Omu land for N7.5m, N15m to individuals in Osun – Details*

Again, Nigerian Army Defiles Court Orders, sells Kelebe-Omu land for N7.5m, N15m to individuals in Osun.

The fragrant disobedience of Nigerian Army to judgment of court and the rule of law which is threatening the peace of the public, need the intervention of the higher authority.

A greater punishment by the Court of law must henceforth come upon any individual, group of people, private and government agencies that embark on contempt of Court against the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.

Despite the Court judgment in favor of the plaintiffs, the defendants in the case of disputed land situated at Kelebe-Omu area in Osogbo and Olorunda local government areas of Osun State, the Nigerian Army has embarked on contempt of Court.

Sources revealed that the fragrant disobedience of court orders by the defendants had been happening for more than one year.

As we speak, the Post-Service Housing Development Limited incorporated by the Nigerian Army to manage the land is selling it plot-by-plot with the sum of N7.5 million for 500sqm and N15 million for 1000sqm to private individuals upon purchase of a Post-Service Housing Scheme Military Application Form for N10,000 from its agent identified as Oladipupo Kafayat in Osogbo.

It would be recalled that the plaintiffs in the suit Number HOS/40/2020, filed by Chief Amodu Akanbi, Sulaiman Folorunsho, Alhaji Ibraheem Olabode, Alfa Rasaki Tiamiyu, and Yekini Salawu, through their lead counsel, U.F Mohammad on behalf of Kelebe-Omu Landowners Association, against the Attorney General of the Federation, Minister of Defence, Post-Service Housing Development Limited, The Nigeria Army and The Chief of Army Staff, prayed that the acquisition of their land by the defendants is unconstitutional and illegal.

However, the Osun State High Court sitting in Ile-Ife on January 10th, 2023 delivered judgment, instructing the defendants to vacate the 3,646 acres of land belonging to Kelebe-Omu landowners, ordering them to pay a sum of N200 million to the plaintiffs for the destruction of their land.

After the court had given its ruling, the defendants obtained a warrant for possession of the land on 25 of April, 2023 after the defendants failed to make use of the opportunity of appealing the judgment within the stipulated period under the law as no notice of appeal from any Court of competent jurisdiction was served.

However, in compliance with the court judgment, the landowners visited the said land to executive the Court judgment, but some military personnel led by one Alayande forcefully dragged, harassed, beaten them, destroy their vehicles and took about thirty of them to Ede barack, threatening to kill if they dare come on the land again. It took the intervention of Ataoja of Osogbo, Oba Jimoh Oyetunji Olanipekun before they could be released.

After the January 10th, 2023 judgment of the High Court, the defendants continued to take actions on the land by allocating part of it to individuals for personal use, while some military personnel still went ahead to erect pillars to demarcate part of the land.

In response to contempt, the landowners on February 13, 2024, staged a massive but peaceful protest to the Osun State government Secretariat and State House of Assembly to demand the intervention of both the state and Federal Government against the lawlessness of the Nigerian Army forcefully denied them their right to possess their land as ordered by the court.

Again, on the 28 of March 2024, the landowners across 45 family compounds in Osogbo and Olorunda local governments areas of Osun State took a fresh action in line with the Court judgment to take ownership of their landed property, some armed military personnel suspected to be from Engineering Command in Ede, Osun State in their uniform stormed the land with guns to harass and stop the clearing of the land.

Recently, the defendant, “POST-SERVICE HOUSING DEVELOPMENT LIMITED” Incorporated by the Nigerian Army to manage the land placed a advertorial banner to continue the laying out parts of the land into residential estate and sells same plot-by-plot to private individuals upon purchase of a Post-Service Housing Scheme Military Application Form for a fee.

The said company, in the name of Nigerian Army had been issuing permits at agreed prices to members of the public for sand/gravel digging and haulage; construction of fish ponds; farming camps; hewing and haulage of firewood; palm oil prospecting; collection of levies ‘Isakole’ (tributes) like oil, palm-wine, yams and kolanuts; felling of trees and sawmilling them into timber logs and planks; destruction of kolanut and palm trees within the said land.

However, names of those involved in this illegal act, bank account of which transaction has been made with facts and figures are yest t be made public by the landowners, expecting that the lawless act will stop soon.

The question that is currently begging for answer is that, when would this contempt of court stop? who will uphold the judgment in favor of ordinary Nigerians?

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