By Simon Ebegbulem
THE Appeal Court in Benin has fixed March 9, 2010 for the hearing on the appeal filed by the African Timber and Plywood (AT&P), a subsidiary ofÂ UAC, against the judgment in favour of the Ogodo family of Sapele in its land case with the firm.
The high court in Sapele, Delta State, had in July 1984, ruled in favour of the Ogodo family, in the land dispute with AT&P.
The plaintiff had traced their root of the title to the land in dispute to their ancestor, Ogodo Okubor, described as one of the founding fathers of Sapele, otherwise known as Urapele.
Ogodo family is one of the four land-owning families in Sapele and they settled on the land before the coming of the Europeans in the town.
The plaintiff had claimed in their argument that the â€œentire land in dispute shown on the plaintiff survey plan is not crown or state or government lan.â€
The high court agreed with the argument and delivered judgment in their favour.
However, in a brief argument yesterday, counsel to AT&P, Mr. K.O. Longe, informed the court of a motion for enlargement of time to file their brief of argument but counsel to the respondent, Mr. S.E.Odibor, argued that they were not properly served with the appeal in the first instance
It,therefore, urged the court to set aside the service.
The lead judge, Justice A.Augiu, struck out a certificate of non-compliance contained in the Suit No. CAB 404,2008, filed by counsel to AT&P, after the parties agreed that the motion had no relevance anymore.
She, therefore, fixedÂ March 9 forÂ hearing on the matter.