The defendants in an alleged fraudulent sale of land located at Wasimi, Maryland have decided to settle out of court following an enrolment order in the case granted by a Lagos High Court sitting in Ikeja.
A Lagos-based lawyer, Olajide Ajana had earlier dragged the defendants, one of whom is a Redeemed Christian Church of God pastor, Goke Aniyeloye, Stephen ibitoye, (Ajana’s client) and Lagos State government to court over the alleged land transaction.
Ibitoye is the first defendant in the suit marked ID/8990GCMW/2022, while Aniyeloye, the governor of Lagos State, Lagos State Attorney-General and The Director of Land Bureau, Lagos State were the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th defendants, respectively.
In a 46-paragraph Statement of Claim, Ajana stated that Ibitoye engaged his services in 2013, at a time the defendant was broke and couldn’t pay him and therefore opted to pay for the legal services rendered with some portions of the land equivalent to five acres and three plots.
According to the statement of claim, Ibitoye and Aniyeloye were selling the said property at Wasimi Maryland Lagos, including the portion assigned to the claimant despite the pendency of the Suit (ID/032 LM/2014) in respect of the same property which Ajana had filed on behalf of his client (Ibitoye).
Ajana further sought an order stating that any sale/transfer of the said five acres and three plots of land or any portion of the said land at Wasimi Maryland Lagos, which Ibitoye had assigned in lieu of the professional fees to the claimant to Aniyeloye or any persons is wrongful, illegal, null and void.
The defendants had written a letter dated July 19, 2022, and also filed a libel suit against Ajana after accusing him of “activating” a libellous publication where the defendants also claimed to have had no business with Ajana or the said land.
Ajana in his response dated July 25, 2022, said, “The publication is an excerpt from Statements of Claim in Suit No ID/8990GCMW/2022 filed and pending at the Ikeja division of Lagos State High Court in which your client, Aniyeloye is the 2nd defendant.
To further display the defendants’ readiness for an out-of-court settlement, Aniyeloye on October 19, 2022, in a signed letter headed ‘’FET, Favour Executive Transports’’, stated that he would be informing his lawyer to withdraw all suits filed against Ajana.
“This is to confirm that I, Pastor Goke Aniyeloye, the Chairman of FET Favour Executive Transports will instruct my brother who is a legal practitioner, T.O Ajayi to withdraw the suit filed against you (Olajide Ajana).
“When he writes the application for discontinuance of the case, I will forward same to you on or before Friday, 21st October 2022. I express a sincere apology for any hitch this suit might have caused you,” the letter read.
Ajana, in his response in a letter also dated October 19, 2022, confirmed he received copies of documents by Aniyeloye of (FET Favour Executive Transport) in respect of ibitoye and several pictures and videos to the effect that he has released the land belonging to Ibitoye at Wasimi Maryland Lagos back to him.