Empire Builders Limited, has accused Topkings Enterprises Limited for using soldiers as land guards to attack the company’s workers.
This was disclosed at a Press conference by the General Manager, Corporate Affairs for Trasacco Group, Mr. Kwame Owusu Danso in Accra.
The press conference according to Mr. Kwame Danso, is to bring to the attention of the media, the illegal activities being perpetrated by Topkings Enterprises Limited and others on land at Adjiringano, belonging to Empire Builders Limited, which is part of the Trasacco Group.
“Every effort of Empire Builders Limited to protect its land has been met with brute force from soldiers engaged in land guards activities. It appears that Topkings Enterprises Limited is operating with the support of some high-level authorities, which accounts for the use of soldiers in land guards activities. Why are military men on the ground able to drive the police away whenever the police try to intervene and maintain the peace? Who is giving the orders to the soldiers of the Ghana Armed Forces to engaged in these land guard activities? We demand that the soldiers are immediately withdrawn from the land and restrained from coming further illegal activities”.
Mr. Danso however, appealed to President Akufo Addo, IGP, Ga Mantse, the Military High Command and powers that be, to uphold the rule of law and hold Topkings Enterprises Limited and its soldiers accountable for their illegal activities.
Management of Empire Builders Limited have given the Government two weeks ultimatum to find a lasting solution to issues. However, failure to do so would led to a massive demonstration and a petition to the President likewise, naming those behind the soldiers to carry out the illegal activities.
“This flagrant brutality, trespass, destruction of property, attempted theft of land and what is tantamount to contempt of the Supreme Court should be condemned and put in check in order to prevent the situation escalating into a state of anarchy”.
Given the background information to the issue, Mr. Kwame Owusu Danso revealed that, in 1977, the Nii Ashong Mlitse Family of Odaitei Tse We of Teshie granted Baron Fiore Ernesto Taricone, who is a naturalised Ghanaian, a lease of a large tract of land at Adjiringano for a term of 99 years.
He said, in 1979, Baron Fiore Ernesto Taricone assigned his interest in the land to Empire Builders Limited, a company in which he was the sole shareholder, and the company subsequently went into possession of the land.
Mr. Kwame Danso further averred that, in 1987, Empire Builders Limited surrendered part of the land back to the Nii Ashong Mlitse Family of Odaitei Tse We of Teshie, leaving Empire Builders Limited with 456 acres of land.
“Empire Builders Limited started developing the Trasacco Valley housing estate on the land without any interference until about 1998 when the company noticed Topkings Enterprises Limited had encroached upon part of the land”.
He pointed out that, in 1999, Empire Builders Limited sued Topkings Enterprises Limited and others for trespass among other things. “It is important you are aware that the size of the land claimed by Topkings Enterprises Limited and its affiliates was approximately 40 acres and 22 acres.
Mr. Kwame Owusu Danso hinted that, in 2003, judgement was delivered and the High Court held among other things that, the claim of Empire Builders Limited against Topkings Enterprises Limited in respect of approximately 39.5 (40) and 22 acres had failed.
“However, the court emphasised that, 114 of the said land belonged to the Government of Ghana, 62 acres to Topkings Enterprises Limited and its affiliates and Empire Builders, to possess the remainder”.
According to Mr. Kwame Danso, the court held that Empire Builders Limited should retain possession of all the land except approximately 62 acres belonging to Topkings Enterprises Limited; approximately 114 acres awarded to the Lands Commission on behalf of the Government.
He said in 2010, by virtue of a lease from the Government and an assignment from the Nungua Stool, Empire Builders Limited acquired the land that had been awarded by the court to the Government.
“Therefore, Empire Builders Limited currently owns approximately 403 out of 456 acres (having failed in its claim against Topkings Enterprises Limited and REIT-Top Housing Estate Limited in respect of approximately 22 and 32 acres respectively).
Topkings Enterprises Limited Mr. Danso indicated, is however deceiving the general public and the authorities by convoluting matters and misapplying the Supreme Court judgement in other to create confusion and pave the way for its spurious claims to the land that was awarded to Empire Builders Limited in the+20 year legal battle as well as the land that was derived by Empire Builders Limited from the Government in 2012 notwithstanding that throughout the protracted litigation Topkings Enterprises Limited claimed a different piece of land (approximately 22 acres, and no court ever made a specific order in favour of Topkings Enterprises Limited in respect of that piece of land or any other part of the disputed lant.