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Tuesday, 13 June 2017

UACN’s purchase of Lekki property voided






A Lagos High Court, Ikeja has nullified the sale of a parcel of land in Lekki, Lagos to UACN Property Development Company Plc by Knight Rook Limited.
Justice Abisoye Bashua declared the sale null and void, in his judgment, following a legal action filed against the two defendants by Grant Properties Limited and Fibigboye Estates Limited over the
rightful owner of the contested property.
The court also awarded N20 million general damages against the 1st defendant (UACN) for depriving the claimants of the peaceful and quiet enjoyment of the property as well as N300, 000 cost.
In his decision, the judge declared that: “The deed of assignment assigning 2.4321 hectares of land within Igbokushu village, Eti-Osa local government area, Lagos within the Victory Park Estate to the 1st defendant is null, void and of no effect.
“An order is made nullifying the deed of assignment purportedly executed by Knight Rook Limited in favour of UACN Property Development Company Plc., covering 2.4321 hectares of land within Igbokushu village, Eti-Osa local government area, Lagos within the Victory Park Estate.
“An order of perpetual injunction is hereby made restraining the 1st defendant, its servants, agents and/or privies, successors-in-title and assigns, including anyone acting for or on their behalf from further encroaching or trespassing on the parcel of land, measuring approximately 50.349 hectares situate at Igbokushu village, behind Okunnu Housing Estate, Lekki Peninsula Scheme 11, Government Estate, Eti-Osa area of Lagos known as Victory Park Estate and covered by certificate of occupancy dated December 6, 2002 and registered as No. 28 at page 28 in volume 2003c in the land registry.”
The judge also dismissed the counter-claim by the 2nd defendant affirming that it validly sold the property to the 1st defendant. “The counterclaim of the 2nd defendant/counterclaimant is contradictory, inconsistent and not cogent and lack any evidential value and it is hereby dismissed in its entirety,” he held.
The case of the claimants was that the 2nd defendant is the owner of the land at Victory Park Estate. The claimants obtained load facility from four banks and as security and in lieu of execution of legal mortgage, claimants transferred its shares in 2nd defendant to the four banks with agreement to transfer back the shares upon liquidation of the loan.
A memo of understanding was executed, which incorporated the relationship between the claimants and the four banks. The project implementation committee vested with the control of the Estate did not sell any portion of the land but one Yemi Adeola and Justina Lewa executed a deed of assignment to the 1st defendant after the banks have transferred the debt to Asset Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON).

FACTS OF THE MATTER

Grant Properties Limited took a loan from 4 banks, Skye, Sterling, Wema and Skye to finance a real estate project. They pledged their shares in Knight Rook Limited and their land in Lekki to the banks as security;
The banks ran into liquidity problems and stopped funding the project, but they refused to freeze the interest;
After the establishment of AMCON, the banks sold the loans of Grant Properties to AMCON;
Sterling Bank directors acting illegally, on insider trading, sold the customer’s land to their proxies, instead of transferring to AMCON;
They sold a portion of the land to UPDC Plc in secret;
The case was brought before a court in 2012. The court gave 2 separate orders for parties to stay away from the land and stop all construction (attached);
At the time of the orders, UPDC was just fencing. Instead of stopping construction as ordered, they continued building. They developed an estate called Alexander Miller Estate. The estate is located behind Femi Okunnu Housing Estate in Lekki, near the new Circle Mall.
The rest of the estate was developed by a Sterling Bank director through his companies, and using a surrogate named RED aka Real Estate Development Company of Nigeria;
The Lagos State High Court declared on June 2nd that the sale of the land to UPDC is null and void;
The court held that the land should have been transferred to AMCON, and all sale or assignment of the land is null and void. This estate includes Cadogan Estate and Alexander Miller Estate;
UPDC and its subscribers are in a panic;
UPDC released a written statement to its buyers on 2nd June 2017 (attached);
UPDC has no title, and everyone buying from UPDC or Cadogan Estate has lost their property.

See the court order documents below:














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