A Catholic Priest in the Eastern Heartland of Nigeria has been accused of trying to use his connections, intimidating tactics and legal instruments to forcefully take a land belonging to the family of one Chief Uju Madu who is currently sitting behind prison bars all because he allegedly refused to surrender his land to the priest and his family who want an access way to their property.
Speaking to our reporter, a source disclosed that the whole charade started when the family of the priest identified as Fr Gerald Njoku bought a property in their estate and demanded for an access land to the said property which according to him had no direct bearing to chief Madu’s property housing a school that is managed by the wife.
The priest and his brother Mr Ifeanyi Njoku who we learnt were hell-bent on having their way subsequently approached the customary Court of Appeal in Imo State with regards to the case. With the matter lingering for almost 8 years due to an alleged relationship existing between the family of the Priest and the presiding Judge, the first respondent in the case was on May 14, 2019 sentenced to 30 days in prison for perjury to be served at the Federal Prisons Owerri Imo State on the orders of the Acting President of the Customary Court of Appeal Imo State Hon. Justice C.U. Anwukah.
Our source also disclosed that while the case was still in court, Mr Ifeanyi Njoku acting on orders from his brother Fr Njoku allegedly mobilized thugs in the middle of the night to knock down the fence and gate housing Mr Madu’s property where they are seeking the access road.
“The Rev Fr sent his younger brother Ifeanyi who took thugs to knock down the fence in the middle of the night. A land that does not belong to them? You only want access road to your own property via another man’s land with force, incarceration, humiliation, thuggery. It’s ridiculous that a Rev. Fr can take laws into his own hands, use thugs.”
It is also alleged that the said Rev Fr boasts to whoever that cares to hear that he has money to throw around in different currencies, has a connection to highly placed people in power, so he can do whatsoever and get away with such anytime as he was believed to have served in Germany for several years.
However disturbing is the position of the Acting President of the Customary Court of Appeal Mrs Anwukah who the Madu’s family alleged that upon consultation for her to revoke the order on their father took a biased position stating that Chief Uju Madu has to agree to relinquish the said access road to the plaintiff as that was the only condition that can grant a revocation of the earlier standing order.
SecretReporters also learned from our source that the Judge is an in-law to the plaintiff’s extended family of Justice A.B. Egu who coincidentally happened to be her colleague in the customary court of appeal, Owerri.
Meanwhile, the case is still in court with an appeal filed at the high court, Owerri by the family of Chief Uju Madu.
When contacted for his own side of the story, the priest Fr Gerald Njoku declined to comment but rather directed our reporter to visit the courthouse or contact his attorney whom he later stated that he did not have his contact as he only recently came back into the country.