Crisis is currently brewing in Ogbeani community in Ndokwa West LGA, Delta State over the ownership of a parcel of land being mapped out for the gas flaring site in the ongoing construction of LPG refineries in the area.
The parcel of land, which has Certificate of Customary Right of Occupancy dated 1985 and bearing the name of Chief Federick Ojumah, is approximately 100 acres.
Meanwhile, the first son of late Federick Ojumah, who is the custodian of the land, Mr. Ojumah Lucky told newsmen in Kwale that he has been in possession of the land with his uncle, High Chief Moses Etu Ebenuwe since his father died years ago, utilising the fertile land for farming peacefully.
He said crisis however came in few months ago after the management of Sterling Global the owner of the LPG site paid them some royalties for taking possession of the land.
He explained that: “Some part of the land has Certificate of Occupancy, a proposed farm land by my late father Frederick Ojumah who did it to attract foreign investors many years ago. We have cash crops in some parts of the land, ponds, old wells and family deity that was managed by my grandfather Pa Obodi James Ojumah now being handled by my uncle High Chief Moses Etu Enebuse.
Continuing he said: “We are four families in Umuachi-Ossai and everybody owns his properties independently. Since my father died, I have been in possession of the land, the people I have boundaries with know me and I know them. I wondered why Pastor Enemosa Ameachi who migrated from Utchi in Ndokwa East LGA, recently began to lay claims that his father jointly owned the land with my father”, he added.
Mr. Ojumah revealed that when the matter was discussed at the Okpala-Uku in Council of Ogbeani community, the entire councils reaffirmed the true ownership of the land to be that of his late father, saying the last two meetings which were held at the family of Umuachi-Ossai larger house and another one at the Okpala-Uku’s palace, were all recorded on tape for reference purposes.
“As i speak with you, Pastor Ameachi has boosted severally to deal with me as he is highly connected. Not satisfied with the verdict of the council of chiefs of Ogbeani community, he petitioned me to EFCC alleging that the family of Achi Annie diverted funds meant for the family. All efforts they made also proved abortive again at the EFCC Benin headquarters. Now he is recruiting some youths to threaten me to pull out of the CDC executive for Sterling Global after being nominated for the office,” he lamented.
Corroborating Lucky Ojumah’s position, High Chief Moses Etu Ebenuwe recounted that: “We are three subfamilies in Udomeh Ossai family in Umuachi-Ossai larger family in Ogbeani community. They are Chukwuma Ajieh, Olodu Anani and Achie Anie.
“There is never a day we shared the same land or farm land, because from time immemorial our lands differ. When pastor Ameachi came back from township he never came to me to give him farm land.
Continuing, he said: “After Sterling Global paid me for my land, i was surprised to see Enemosa family came to my house to demand for their share of the money. I was shocked because i know we don’t have the same land both in Ogbeani community and our farm land in Bogaribo. I directed them to go and meet Chief Nja Onwuka, because they all share same land.”
As a further action to set the records straight and settle the matter beyond doubt, the Okpala-Uku of Ogbeani Kingdom, HRH, Onyeazor Samuel Ikuni and the Spokesman of Ogbeani, Chief Gilbert Enebuse, the CDC Chairman, Chief Daniel Oba-Ogu, as well as the General Secretary, Mr. Peter Enemuwe, in a letter addressed to the Sterling Global and dully signed by them and others, reaffirmed that Enemosa Ossai family does not have land in Bogaribo.
“That all rights and benefits of the said land should be directed to Achi-Annie family represented by High Chief Moses Etu Ebenuwe and Mr. Ojumah Lucky Enuekwe,” the letter affirmed.
Meanwhile, all efforts made to speak with pastor Ameachi proved abortive as his telephone line could not be connected just as the representative of Sterling Global failed to comment on the matter when contacted on phone.