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Enugu Residents, CP Ojukwu On War Path Over Church Land

Unless the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, and the Governor of Enugu State, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, quickly wade into the dangerous storm that seems to be quietly building up in the Maryland layout of Enugu, it may soon degenerate into a more serious and highly embarrassing crisis.

At the centre of the brewing crisis is the newly appointed Commissioner of Police in the State, Mr. Emmanuel Ojukwu and his wife who are being accused of illegally grabbing of the Command land meant for a Police Station.

Mr. Ojukwu, a former Force Public Relations Officer, who is billed to retire in two months is said to have cornered the land set aside for a Police Station in the Maryland layout in Enugu State.

Our sources said his wife is now building a set of shops on the site with incredible speed, working day and night, apparently to complete the project before the CP’s retirement.

It is gathered, and strangely too, that the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) of Uwani, Enugu appears in the picture as he is personally supervising the project on their behalf.

The land was said to have been donated by Professor Godwin Odenigwe and family in 1980 for the purpose of building a Police Station and on which the Professor built a Police Post for the community.

The angry residents of state the Maryland Layout whose complaints have so far fallen on deaf ears, are now  imploring both the IGP and the governor, himself a former resident of the layout, to step in and stop the construction work immediately.

They have  also called for a thorough investigation of the matter, with a view to bringing the Commissioner of Police to book if found wanting.

.While the citizens of Maryland layout Enugu are crying foul,  as a set of shops owned by the new Police Commissioner and his wife is still being erected on the site.

The residents  have, however, vowed not to surrender to the tyranny – a situation that causing and tension to quietly build up in the area.

It was learnt that the land in question, situated along Ugwuaji Village Road, Enugu, and measuring over 6,000 square meters, was acquired by Dr. G. A. Odenigwe by Indenture of Leases dated 10th day of November 1962.

It was registered as No. 61 at Page 61 in Volume 332 of the Land Registry Enugu; 9th March 1963. It was again, registered as No. 56 at Page 56 in Volume 352 of the Land Registry Enugu on 24th March 1972 and as No. 45 at Page 45 in Volume 624 of the Land Registry Enugu as depicted on Plan No. E/GA 209/62 and Plan No. OKE/L447/72. In 1973/74.

The said Property was laid into Plots 190, 191, 192, 192A, 206, 207, 208 and 209 Maryland Layout, Enugu.

According to Mr. Ani Ugwu, an 80-year old indigene of Ugwuaji Village and a longtime resident of the Maryland layout Enugu, Prof. Odenigwe, in 1977, built a palatial mansion on part of the land and that it was the only development in that part of Enugu for over 20 years.

Mr. Ugwu then gave a brief history of the Maryland layout Enugu, recalling that when the area was laid into an official layout by the licensed surveyor, the late Fredrick Okoli, his people approached Professor Odenigwe to rename Ugwuaji Road “Odenigwe Road” because of his contributions to the area.

The latter refused. Mr. Ugwu also said he was part of a delegation from the Ugwuaji community, led by their traditional ruler, that approached the surveyor to name the new layout Odenigwe Layout but that Professor Odenigwe, again, refused and instead opted to name the new layout after his favorite saint – the Virgin Mary.

It was Professor Odenigwe who made sure NEPA brought light to the area.


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