By Nelson Manneh
The land dispute between the Tamba and Kujabie families of Sotokoi and Sumakunda respectively, continues to escalate barely eight years after Justice Awa Bah ruled in favour of Masanneh Tamba.
The Brikama High Court in December 2011 declared and ruled that the plaintiff (Masanneh Tamba) and all those claiming under him, are the beneficial owners and entitled to all the piece of land situated in Madina Sotokoi village in the Kombo East district of the Republic of The Gambia, measuring 392.00m x 419.00m x448.00m x421.00m.
On 21st March 2019, Foroyaa spoke to the parties involved in the dispute after it received information that some people in Madina Sotokoi were bracing themselves for an eviction exercise.
Musa Kujabi who was the defendant in the case before the High Court said: “I am calling on Government to take action and address this problem because we will never vacate from this place. Any attempt to evict us could be dangerous.”
He added: “We have not seen or received any eviction letter from the office of the Department of Physical Planning and we will not leave this place.”
Masanneh Tamba, a former Alkalo of Madina Sotokoi said the land in dispute belongs to the Tamba family and that the Court had ruled in their favour.
“Our interest is not to evict the people living there. What we want is ownership and those people living there should use the right channel to purchase the land, if they want to settle there,” he said.
Tamba claimed that the said land is in Sotokoi, adding that they have nothing to do with the people of Sumakunda
On the 18th day of March 2008, the Plaintiffs represented by Masanneh Tamba, brought civil action against the Kujabi family asking the Court to declare that they own the land, and for the Court to issue an injunction restraining the defendants from claiming possession of the said land. The land under dispute measures 392.00m x 419.00m x448.00m x421.00m wherein both families claim ownership.
The defense made a counter claim seeking declaration that they are the rightful owners and have possession of the disputed land. They also wanted the Court to restrain the plaintiffs from occupying the said land.