by crossriverwatch admin
The Appeal Court, Calabar Judicial division on Friday, upheld the ruling of a Calabar High Court, which affirmed Muri Effiong Mbukpa as the Muri Munene of Calabar South and the current Grand Patriarch of Efut kingdom.
The ruling is sequel to an appeal brought by three Efut Muris: Muri Okokon Edet Edem, Muri Hogan Bassey challenging the ruling of a Calabar High Court affirming the status of Muri Effiong Mbukpa as the acclaimed Muri Munene of Efuts.
The Muris in the appeal sought to nullify the ruling of the High Court and stop Muri Effiong Mbukpa, the Muri Munene of Efut, Ndabo Godwin Bassey, Secretary of Efut Combined Assembly, and Ndabo Obo E Obo, Chairman of Efut Combined Assembly the right to execute documents of transfer of title in land matters in Calabar South local government area and also sought an Oder of Perpetual Injunction restraining them from acting as representatives of Efut Abua and Efut Ekondo Combined Assembly for the purpose of receiving compensation and benefit from the land in the area.
However, in the ruling delivered by Justice Uzo Ndukwe Anyanwu on behalf of two others, Justice Mohammed Lawal Garba and Justice Chima Centus Nweze, the Appellate Court stated that the appeal against the ruling of a Calabar High Court presided over by Justice Obojor Ogar was “unmeritorious” and consequently dismissed the appeal.
The Justices stated in the ruling that the “Appellants complained about the activities of the Respondents but did not proffer the name of the people who are supposed to deal with the land issues as complained by the Appellants.”
Also, the Appeal Court stated that Muri Okokon Edet Edem who brought the suit as for himself and in representative capacity of other Muris was in a letter dated 23rd October and 18th December, 2002 “suspended from the Efut Abua and Efut Ekondo Combined Council. This state of affairs was not contradicted in any of their affidavit. It would be taken that the Appellant had indeed no locus in bringing this suit on his behalf and in representative capacity when he had been suspended from the combined council”.
On the claim by the Respondents, Muri Effiong Mbukpa, that he is the acclaimed Muri Munene of Efut Kingdom, Ndabo Godwin Bassey as the Secretary of the Efut Combined Assembly, Ndabo Obo E Obo as the chairman of the Efut Combined Assembly, the court ruled that the Appellants never challenged “This description of the Respondents. It therefore stands as what the Respondents are and what they represent.”
Conclusively, the judges unanimously ruled that “the Appellants failed to prove their claims before the lower court and therefore, their claims ought to fail. The issues articulated by the Appellants are resolved against them. This Appeal is unmeritorious and therefore, failed. The cost to the Respondents is assessed at N50, 000”.
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