High Court Restrains Wire Mesh Manufacturing Ltd & Others Over Land Tussle

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An Accra High Court on Monday 31st May 2021, issued a restraining order against the Chief of Nlgeshie Lafa under the James Town Stool Nii Ayi Okufuobour I, and Nii Ayi Okudzeman IV, Dzasetse of Ngleshie Alata Stool (plaintiffs), as well as the defendants Kemi and McCarthy Obeng representing Wire Mesh Manufacturing Limited or Marcor Company from interfering with the land in dispute till the final determination of the suit.

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The order, granted by Justice Kwame Gyamfi Osei, prevents the parties, their privies, agents, workmen, assigns etc from developing or interfering with the disputed land pending the final determination of the suit.

It could be recalled that the traditional authority commenced legal action against the defendants Kemi and McCarthy Obeng at the High Court (Land Division) in Accra over what the traditional authority says was the unlawful occupation of a portion of their land by the respondents who were trying to develop same with the speed of light as well as filling portions for the construction of buildings.

Lawyer for the plaintiffs Abdul-Gafar Ablorh, prayed the court presided over by justice Kwame Gyamfi Osei, that the applicants are owners in possession of all that parcel of land situate as Ngleshie Lafa Marko, which fall within the judgement plan of the suit titled “Mantse Kojo Ababio IV VRS R.R, Quartey & Annor which was decided in the year 1916, the said judgement been in favour of plaintiffs stool.

In the motion sighted by The Meridian Newspaper, the applicants averred that the respondents have trespassed unto the applicant’s land at Lafa-Barima Marko and they content that the action or conduct of the respondents are inconsistent with the applicant’s ownership of the land which is the subject matter of the suit.

The respondents argued that the Wire Mesh Manufacturing Limited did all due diligence concerning the land before purchasing the leasehold interest in the land including conducting a search at the Lands Commission, physical inspections of the land and making reasonable inquiries in respect of the land which indicated that Marcor limited has a leasehold interest in the land from the Gbawe Kwatei Family which was registered with land certificate No. GAAA2105 and it is free from any encumbrance.

They further stated that the land in dispute is part of a vast tract of land known as Gbawe Kwatei family lands of which the Gbawe Kwatei family became the legitimate owner by judgements in multiple suits.

Presiding Judge justice Kwame Gyamfi Osei in his ruling said “I’m not well positioned to make a determination as to who has a better title to the disputed land at this stage but I can say that it would be just and convenient to restrain all the parties till the final determination. It would not be just to allow the defendants and for that matter the Marcor company or the Wire Mesh Manufacturing Limited to develop the land basely on inconvenience that might occasion the Wire Mesh manufacturing company.”

The interest of the parties could best be protected at this stage of the case by restraining both parties from interfering with the land till the final determination of the suit. Holding the balance evenly between the parties would be in the interest of justice. In the case of ODONKOR AND OTHERS V AMARTEI (1987-88)1 GLR 578SC, holding 1 it was held that ‘the basic purpose of interim orders was, as much as possible, to hold the balance evenly between the parties, pending a final resolution of matters in difference between them, and also to ensure that at the end of the day the successful party did not find that his victory was an empty one, or one that brought him more problems than blessing”

Justice Kwame Gyamfi Osei granted the injunction and ruled that the parties, their privies, agents, workmen, assigns etc are restrained from developing or interfering with the disputed land pending the final determination of the suit.

Meanwhile a visit to the site by this reporter to ascertain whether or not the manufacturing company has vacated the site as directed by the Court a day after the ruling, it turned out that they were not ready to obey the court as scores of workers were seen on site busily working in blatant disregard of the Court order.

The plaintiffs have however served notice that they will haul them before the appropriate quarters for the necessary action to be taken against them.

  1. By: Ghanainvoiceonline.com

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