The Evangelical Presbyterian Church, Ghana (EPCG) has warned a private developer to stay away from land at Cantonment, belonging to the church.
According to the church, the four-acre land, located close to Saint Thomas Aquinas Senior High School, at Cantonment, in Accra, had illegally been acquired by the developer.
Torgbui Gobah Tengey, President of the Defenders of the First Group of EPCG, at a news conference, in Accra, on Friday, claimed the church acquired the land in the 1950s when an American Missionaries from the church were departing the country.
“This property belongs to the EP Church. It was given to us by the American Missionaries in the 50s, when they were leaving.
“Such is how we have acquired most of our property, some we bought, some were given to us free,” he emphasised.
Torgbui Tengey, noted that in November 2021, the church filed an order for interlocutory injunction at the High Court, Land Division, upon realising that the land had been taken over and being developed by a private company.
He said despite this injunction, the developer had failed to stop the development, which he added, amounted to amounted to contempt.
He called on the “encroacher” to immediately halt all development activities on the property until all legal matters were determined.
“We don’t do these things anywhere in the world, using by force to take someone's property. They know that this property belongs to the EPCG and we have been to the court, yet they are continuing with development,” he said.
Torgbui Tengey cautioned that, even though the church respected the law and would wait on the court to determine the rightful owner of the property, it would, however, not sit aloft should development on the land continue.
“We want them to realise that we are not going to fight them, the law will fight them but we are warning them in advance, that all though the law will be taking its course, they shouldn’t think there is nobody coming here to fight for the property.
“We are law abiding but when it comes to critical point as defenders, we are here to defend the property,” he cautioned.
Mr Paul Avuyi, a Presbyter of the EPCG expressed worry over what he termed the impunity at which individuals and group were grabbing lands.
He, therefore, urged the courts to, in such matters, expedite the determination of the cases to forestall any unforeseen circumstance.
“We talk of a constitution that rules a country and one of the major aspects of good governance is the rule of law, but you will realise that in this country of ours, there is so much disrespect for the law and the courts, that, a court has given an injunction, and it’s happening everywhere, but they defiled the court's injunction and continue to work. So, if there is violence, who is to blame?
“So, we think that the court system in dealing with such things must be handled promptly so that people who are engaging in this disrespect and lawless business are dealt with severely to be a deterrent to other members of society, because there is so much greed, selfishness and that is destroying the country,” Mr Avuyi noted.