The Tinubu Magistrate Court in Lagos has ordered the takeover of the entire 12-story African Continental Bank (ACB) Building, including its appurtenances, which is located at 106/108 Broad Street in Lagos.

Chief Magistrate Adedamola Paul of Tinubu Magistrate Court in Lagos issued the order on December 14, 2021.

The chief magistrate ruled that the Consolidated Discount Limited is the bona fide owner of the entire building known as the African Continental Bank (ACB) Building with its appurtenances, known as No. 106/108, Broad Street, Lagos Island, Lagos State, according to the judgment.

The matter was specifically adjourned for cross-examination and defense, the court said at the conclusion of the claimant’s case.

“However, the defendants remained unrepresented and unrepresented by legal counsel.” In this case, the claimant’s case was determined to be uncontested and closed.

“As it stands, I am convinced that the claimant’s Attorney has presented cogent, convincing, and sufficient evidence to hold that the property in its aforesaid deplorable state is in dire need of outright substantial, compellable repairs, and I believe it is justifiable to make such a declaration in the circumstances.”

“In general, given the alarmingly high frequency of building collapses and the resulting avoidable human deaths, a court confronted with a case exhibiting these ominous and precarious characteristics has a fundamental judicial responsibility to use its vantage point and the law as proactive social engineering instruments.”

“In addition, I am convinced that this is one of the few critical circumstances in which this court can proactively and justifiably invoke the provisions of section 45 (l)(a) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in the overwhelming interest of public safety.”

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“I am reasonably convinced that the claimant has sufficiently proved its case against the defendants to deserve judgment relatively as claimed,” the magistrate concluded, based on the claimant’s Attorney’s overwhelming uncontradicted evidence and satisfactory proofs of service of all pre-requisite statutory processes on the defendants.

The court therefore ordered that the defendants vacate and relinquish possession of the entire building known as the African Continental Bank (ACB) building, herein in issue with its appurtenances, located at No. 106/108, Broad Street, Lagos Island, Lagos State, to the claimant immediately for urgent abatement of nuisance and outright protective restoration purposes.

“In the event that the defendants refuse and or fail to vacate and relinquish possession as adjudged,” the court continued, “the Deputy Sheriff of the High Court of Lagos State is hereby authorised and directed to enter the said premises and enforce possession, as well as to take inventory and custody of any movable valuable found therein.”

“In the alternative, the Lagos State Building Control Agency (LABSCA) or any other applicable Statutory state authority is directed to take all reasonable measures to ensure and or enforce the immediate evacuation of the defendants from the said premises,” the court ruled.

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