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Abuja Pastor, Lawyer Fight Over Church Property

A pastor, Ike John Chidiebere and a property developer/lawyer, Obioma Success are at daggers drawn over a church property located in the highbrow Garki district in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja.

While the lawyer and owner of the disputed property (Success) is bent on converting the property to a hotel/night club, the pastor of Richfield of God Church insists that a 2012 Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) entered between them subsists and must be adhered to.

The landlord insists his actions are in line with the 2012 MoU in question. Again, another June 2015 agreement reportedly entered between some members of the Richfield of God Church and the landlord stated that the church will vacate the premises on July 31, 2015.

“It was agreed between the church and Barrister Success Obioma that the church shall use the restaurant from June 23, 2015 to July 31, 2015 free of charge. The church shall remove their valuables from the temporary church building and remove it because it is standing on the sewage line to enable the connection of waste to the sewage line and the church shall handover the restaurant to the landlord” the agreement read.

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The pastor has dismissed the agreement as a fake, insisting that he was not involved.

Already, prompted by the landlord, the Federal Capital Territory Development Control have demolished part of the temporary structure built by the church on the 200 square metres property, despite a court action and protests from the church’s leadership.

“On August 24, he (landlord) went ahead and brought the Abuja environmental sanitation board to come and recommend for the demolition of the church not minding the fact that the case is in the court. His claim was that he wanted to direct the waste pipes to the sewage line but the church is sitting on the sewage line. When they came, they found out that it is not true so they showed him how and where to channel his waste.

“It is apparent that Barrister Obioma Success is bent on ejecting the church illegally from the land by all means despite the Memorandum of Understanding and evidence of payment to establish the fact that we are yearly tenants.” the pastor lamented when speaking to journalists.


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