• Court adjourns suit filed by Lagos billionaire against siblings

    Court adjourns suit filed by lagos billionaire against siblings - nigeria newspapers online
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    Hearing in the suit filed by a Lagos-based billionaire and property developer, Oluwatumininu Okeowo, against some of his siblings has been adjourned till May 20, 2024.

    Okeowo had, in suit number LD/ADR/4661/2022, dragged his siblings before Justice Aishat Opesanwo of the Lagos High Court claiming N100 million as damages for libel over a dispute on the estate of their late father, Taiwo Okeowo.

    The defendants in the suit are Joe Faraday, (a company belonging to his brother), Joshua Okeowo and Tolulope Okeowo. The claimant, through his counsel, Wale Adesokan (SAN), is asking the court for an order of perpetual injunction restraining the defendants from publishing libelous statements against him.

    He prayed the court to compel the defendants to disclose evidence that he (claimant) forged Lagos State Certificate of Occupancy over the property known as 15A and 15B, Bayo Kuku Road, Ikoyi, Lagos.

    Meanwhile, the defendants in their statement of defence filed by their counsel, Kunle Adegoke (SAN), denied making any unprovoked assault or orchestrated smear campaign on the claimant’s character and neither had any malice against him.

    They further stated that they did not, at any time, malign or defame the character of the claimant in any manner whatsoever and shall put the claimant to strictest proof in respect of the allegation.

    The defendants averred that they did not at any time whatsoever author the purported internet publication, titled ‘Sir Taiwo Okeowo Estate Brief’, or engaged in a campaign of calumny against the claimant, concerning the alleged destruction of Santo Domingo Luxury Residences or any other matter whatsoever.

    They stated that the letter, dated October 5, 2022, referenced to in paragraph 10 of the statement of claim was written on the authorisation of the second and third defendants as well as their six siblings in their capacities as shareholders and directors of Manna Real Estate Company Limited and Metal Construction (West Africa) Ltd and beneficiaries of the Estate of the late Sir Taiwo Okeowo, wherein they instructed the law firm of Fortbanc to petition the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Inspector General of Police (IGP) to investigate activities of the claimant.

    They averred that the basis for the petition to the law enforcement authorities by the second and third defendants and their other siblings was due to the alleged fraudulent and reckless dissipation of property of the estate of their late father, among other actions allegedly committed by the claimant.

    Also, in their counterclaim, the defendants averred that since the death of their father, no letter of administration was granted to anyone, whereas the claimant had been diverting assets of the estate to his personal use.

    They alleged that after the death of their father in 2003, the defendant forcibly took over the control of two companies, Metal Construction (West Africa) Ltd and Manna Real Estate Company Ltd, including the assets of the estate of the deceased, without the consent or authority of the surviving children of the deceased.

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