Cletus Ibeto Docked Again for Fraud and Falsification of Documents 

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Today, the Rivers State High Court continued its cross examination of Chief Cletus Ibeto using Ibeto’s own written testimony under the jurisdiction of Justice A. Enebeli of Court 8

Barr Ukala (SAN), continued poking holes in Ibeto’s testimony with concentration on the payments and documentations relating to the lands in dispute

Cletus Ibeto stated that Dozzy gave him 3.925 Billion Naira for the lands in dispute meanwhile, Ibeto’s lawyers confirmed that the amount received was 4 Billion Naira

Upon verification of the above claims by Ibeto using the exhibit 3 of Ibeto’s own testimony, it began glaring that once again that Cletus Ibeto was contradicting himself … The agreed total sum was 6.7 Billion out of which 4 Billion was paid as at 31st March 2017. The document shows Ibeto’s lawyers asking for the remaining 2.7 Billion on the said lands

Cletus Ibeto flared up and yet again so Barr Ikpeazu (SAN) stepped in to plead on his behalf to the Judge and advised Cletus Ibeto to stop the disregard towards the Court

Ibeto denied borrowing the sum of 6 Million Dollars (ie 3 Million Dollars on separate occasions), stating that he has never borrowed anything from Dozzy in his life. Ibeto also denied that he didn’t borrow 3 Million Dollars from Dozzy the second time and due to his inability to pay back, was converted to part payment of the lands in dispute

Cletus Ibeto admitted that Dozzy gave him 3 Million Dollars at the time when the exchange was 235 Naira to the Dollar, but claimed he paid back the same sum to Dozzy. He also claimed that Dozzy never gave him another 3 Million Dollars twice, only once

However, 3 Million Dollars at 235 Naira is 7.05 Million which was added to the 3.925 Million, it equates to 4 Billion Naira which was the amount that Ibeto’s lawyers confirmed receipt of… Therefore, it became glaring that there was another 3 Million Dollars which Ibeto tried to deny to no avail

Dozzy then insisted that the rate of 502 Naira to the Dollar would be used to pay back his 3 Million Dollars which if applied, balloons the total amount to 4.8 Billion Naira (as at 2020) but Ibeto claimed he doesn’t know about the calculations and isn’t interested in the arithmetic. Ibeto went ahead to say he is bigger than the amount and would have paid back but insists that the borrowing of second 3 Million Dollars never happened

In exhibit 4, which is the document sent to Ibeto’s lawyers from the Ministry of Lands, showed that the Certified True Copy given to Ibeto was in error, that the surveyor plan given to Ibeto wasn’t found in their records and ordered Ibeto to return the Certified True Copy in his possession which raised the genuity of the documents given to Dozzy by Ibeto but Ibeto claimed that the letter is 100% fake because he later went to the Ministry and they certified his own Certified True Copy “again” which means Ibeto has 2 Certified True Copies to the lands in question

Ibeto confirmed that he got a letter from the Ministry which asked him to return his the Certified True Copy and also confirmed that he never got a second letter which nullified the first letter from the Ministry which stated that his Certified True Copy is fake… Therefore, the letter received from the Ministry of Lands is still active which means Ibeto’s Certified True Copy is fake. Ibeto also confirmed that he disregarded the order of the Ministry of Lands and didn’t return his own Certified True Copy because to him, it’s also authentic

Ibeto was given 15mins to find and produce his 2 Certified True Copies (one dated 2017 and another dated 2021). Ibeto claimed that he engaged a known registered surveyor by name, S.E.G. Kalio, approved by Surveyor General of the State

Ibeto then denied knowing any surveyor by the name of Timothy C. Ugwuni but the first survey attached to the deed of which the Ministry ordered Ibeto to return his Cerified True Copy, had a survey plan that bore the name of Kalio while the name of the surveyor on his second document bears the name of Ugwuni meanwhile, Ibeto categorically stated that he doesn’t know any Ugwuni so how come the Ugwuni is the surveyor on the document?

Meanwhile, the Rivers Inland Revenue has written documents where it states that the documents presented by Ibeto to Dozzy over the lands are fake but Ibeto claimed that he is not aware of such letters/documents also One or Two Committee findings by the Rivers State Government prove that Ibeto doesn’t own the lands in question but Ibeto claimed he is not aware of such as well.

Upon cross examination by Barr Ukala (SAN), Ibeto confirmed he paid stamp duties on both documents where he paid 50 Naira stamp duty on an 8 Million Naira property in 2007. The stamp duty was paid 26th January 2023 and no fine or penalty was paid which proves that the stamp duty is fake

On the second document, Ibeto stated that he also paid 50 Naira on the 26th January 2023 but the document is also dated 2007 and again, no fine or penalty paid despite the value of the property being 24.240 Million Naira

Barr Ukala stated that Ibeto doesn’t own the lands which is why he didn’t pay the correct rates on the lands and also why he has conflicting documents over the lands, also that the reclaimation of the lands belongs to the State Government not the community so it made no sense for Ibeto to buy the lands from the community but Ibeto denied and rejected everything Ukala stated

Barr Ukala then asked for the counterclaim by Dozzy to be admitted and activated by the Court so it can begin running as soon as possible

The Court then adjourned further proceedings on the matter till the 15th, 16th and 17th as well as the 20th, 21st and 22nd days of February 2023

Culled and edited

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