A High Court sitting in Owerri has restrained the Imo State Government and other four defendants from carrying out any construction of works, collection of rents or proceeds of whatever from Nkwo Orji Market situated at Orji Uratta until the next adjourned date of the matter.
The interim retraining order was handed to them by the State High Court presided over by Justice E. F .Njemanze.
The judge in a suit no: HOW/359/2019 said that he gave the restraining order having seen that the case is generating interest and tension.
He said, “The defendants by themselves, their servants, agents, officers and/or hirelings, are restrained from, in whatsoever manner, entering into, building, developing, constructing or carrying out any developmental activity or works, collection of rents or proceed of whatever name at Nkwo Orji Market on the subject matter of this suit, pending the next adjourned date of the matter”.
The judge directed that the Owerri North Local Government Chairman or any other officers of the Local Government authorized by him shall within this period takeover management and control of market. The matter was subsequently fixed for a later date.
The Judge also dismissed application of Chief Enyinnaya Onuegbu defendant for the party seeking to be joined with #10,000 cost in favour of the plaintiff, saying it is clear that the party seeking to join is in a hurry to come in and this caused non compliance with Order 13 Rule 17 (1) and (2) of the High Court Rules 2017.
Earlier, counsel to the plaintiffs, MC. Amanze had argued that they are opposed to the application.
The defendant are seeking for extension of time to file their memorandum of appearance, statement of defence, witness deposition on Oat and others accompany processes.
Briefing newsmen shortly after the court proceedings, Chief Amanze Njoku said he wants Rule of Law to prevail. He averred that the market belong to them and they are not demanding all the land in the market but only want their own potion given back to them.
Speaking also chief Emma Oguchuruba said that the market really belonged to the plaintiffs as they are descendant of the said Nkwo Orji market. That the Government allocated some shops to some women with allocation papers too.
Thomas Njoku added saying they want their land given back to them.
The Plaintiffs in the matter includes:
Chief Amanze C.P. Njoku, Obingaya Innocent Njoku,Thomas Njoku, Charles Njoku, Cyril Njoku, Daniel Ohajinuta, Damian Njoku, Chinwendu Njoku and Martin Njoku .
Defendant includes: Imo state Government, Commissioner for None Formal Sector and Market Development Imo State, Attorney General of Imo State, Owerri North LGA.