The Cape Coast High Court has nullified the transfer of a large parcel of state land at Twifo-Hemang in the Central Region by the government in 2009 to the Ellis and Wood families, former owners of the land before it was compulsorily acquired by the state.
In a judgment dated June 13, this year, the court held that the government transferred the land under a non-existing law and, therefore, the deed of transfer signed by then President John Agyekum Kufuor was invalid.
However, it held that the Twifo-Hemang Stool, which was battling the government and the Ellis and Wood families for possession of the land, should not interfere with the land because it had no interest in it.
Rather, the court, presided over by Justice Emmanuel Atsu Lodoh, held that since the said transfer by the government was invalid, the land still remained the property of the state.
“This, therefore, means that the disputed land remains vested in the Republic of Ghana, since the acquisition instrument remains valid,” Justice Lodoh held.
Consequently, the court ordered the plaintiff — Nana Amoa Sasraku IV, the Paramount Chief of Twifo-Hemang, or anybody acting on his behalf — not to set foot on the land for the sake of peace and security.
“It is further ordered that the plaintiff, successors in title, agents, assigns or any other person or entity deriving its authority from the plaintiff is equally hereby restrained from interfering with the disputed land,” the court held.
Again, after declaring as invalid the transfer of the land by the government to the Ellis and Wood families, it prohibited the Lands Commission from registering the land on behalf of the families.
“The Regional Lands Commission, Central Region, is hereby restrained from registering any document prepared pursuant to the deed of transfer dated 6th January, 2009 and signed by President Kufuor to the Ellis and Wood families or any other law,” Justice Lodoh ordered.