By Emma Amaize
WARRI—FORMER militant leader, Chief Government Ekpemupolo, alias Tompolo, has approached a Delta State High Court sitting in Warri, seeking to be joined as 7th plaintiff in a case brought against the Delta State Governor and four others by Jeph Kebbi International Limited and others, over the 49,746 hectares of land acquired by the government, along the NPA-Effurun Expressway, Edjeba, for the Warri Industrial Business Park, WIBP.
The first set of defendants are the Governor of the state, Commissioner for Lands, Survey and Urban Development, Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice of the state, while the second set of defendants are Arco Petrochemical Engineering Company Limited and Messrs. KPMG Professional Services, Nigeria.
Plaintiffs in the case are Jeph Kebbi International Limited, Gramen Petroservice Nigeria Limited, Seiya Transport Limited, Hercule Maritime Limited and Nestoil Limited.
Generally, the contention of the plaintiffs was that they are the owners in possession of their various vast expanses of lands in question and acquired interests and rights on them with accredited members of the respective family units, only for the state government to purportedly revoke their rights without given them opportunity to file in objections.
In an affidavit in support of his motion on notice by Peterson Osiobe of G.B Timiyo and Co Solicitors in Effurun, the counsel said Tompolo informed him that a deed of conveyance was made between him and Ikpuri family of Edjeba, Warri in 2003, wherein he (Tompolo) was granted absolute, a piece of land known as Ekpenwaware|Otor_Edo, measuring 22,307 hectares, lying, situate and being at Edjeba Water Front, along Edjeba Rivers, by Chevron Hospital Road, Off NPA Express Road, Edjeba, Warri.
The counsel said Tompolo’s presence was necessary for the court to effectually and completely adjudicate upon and settle once and for all, all the issues in dispute in the case and avoid unnecessary duplicity of actions.
When the case came up for hearing recently, Tompolo and the 6th applicant were not present and the court insisted they must be present in court before the two applications would be heard.