By Innocent Anaba
Counsel to the Rumucheta-Mgbuesilves family of Okporo Rumukoroshe in Obio/ Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State, Mr Lucius Nwaosu, SAN, yesterday clarified that weekend judgement by the Court of Appeal, Port Harcourt, was in respect of Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited, SPDC, land inÂ Mgbuesilaru Rumuokoroshe, Ikwerre area of Port Harcourt.
Mr Nwaosu in a statement yesterday, said, â€œMy attention has been invited to your report in the Vanguard of today (yesterday) April 20, 2010, on the appeal, Re:Appeal No.CA/PH/51/2008 Shell Petroleum Vs Ojiowhor Monday Amadi & Ors.Â There is a mix up in the location of the subject land.
The land in question in No.CA/PH/51/2008,Â is at Mgbuesilaru Rumuokoroshe, in Ikwerre area of Port Harcourt.
â€œThis comprises the very expansive Shell Residential Area,(commonly called R.A.). Shellâ€™s appeal against the judgement of Justice Enebeli, of Rivers State High Court ordering its forfeiture was unanimously dismissed by the Court of Appeal, Port Harcourt Division on 15 April 2010.
â€œIt is also true that a similar appeal is pending in the same Appeal Court against a similar decision by Justice Okpara, of the Rivers State High Court and on identical facts, wherein forfeiture was ordered over Shellâ€™s Bonny Terminal Land. That appeal is yet to be determined.
â€œThe mix up is understandable because your paper had previously with ThisdayNewspapers reported the two cases at the High court levels. In both cases the grievance of the land owners was that Shell obtained a Certificate of Occupancy over their land, the subject of a tenancy agreement, behind the natives. You may wish to be guided accordingly.
I am in a position to make this observation as I was variously the plaintiffs and respondents counsel in both cases and courtsâ€, he added.