- Zein v. Geidam
- ₦ 200
Zein v. Geidam
ALHAJI MOHAMMED ZEIN
ALHAJI TIJANI SALEH
COURT OF APPEAL
( JOS DIVISION )
ALOMA MARIAM MUKHTAR JCA (
IFEYINWA CECILIA NZEAKO JCA
IKECHI FRANCIS OGBUAGU JCA ( Read the Lead Judgment )
MONDAY, 19TH APRIL, 2004
APPEAL - Ground of appeal - Omnibus ground - Purport of
- Written contracts and agreements - Contracts of Bindingness on court -
Ambiguities therein - Propriety of use of extrinsic evidence to determine real
intention of parties
- Agreements and contracts - Contents of - Bindingness on court - Ambiguities
therein - Propriety of use of extrinsic evidence to determine real intention of
- Signatory to - Bindingness of content of document on
- Spurious document/deed of title - Registration of Whether validates
- Address of counsel - Impropriety of substituting for evidence before the
- Allegation of fraud in civil suit - Standard of proof of Need ot distinctly allege
and prove beyond reasonable doubt
- Signature - Dispute as to authority of - Duty on court to compare with other
signature of the signatory
AND ORDERS - Reliefs not claimed by parties Impropriety of court awarding
LAW - Title to land - Dismissal of plaintiffs claim to title Automatic
conferment of title on defendant where there is no cross-action - Impropriety
- Evidence - Pleading of - Needlessness of - Facts not evidence need be pleaded
AND PROCEDURE - Address of counsel - Impropriety of substituting for evidence
before the court
Whether having regard to the pleadings and the evidence
before the trial court, the trial Judge was right in dismissing the appellantâ€™s
Whether the respondent was entitled to the declaration
and order made by the trial court in his favour having regard to the state of
the pleadings and the evidence before the court?
This is an appeal against the
judgment of the High Court of Borno State, Maiduguri delivered on 1st November,
The appellant (plaintiff in the
lower court) was indebted to a third party - one Alhaji Modu Gorama in the sum
of N21,000.00 (twenty-one thousand naira) only as a result of which he was
detained in prison custody by the Upper Area Court. His relations approached
the respondent to secure a loan of N26,000.00 (twenty-six thousand naira) only,
to facilitate the appellantâ€™s bail. The respondent provided the said sum but
upon a written agreement made between the appellant and the respondent on 30th
August, 1983 . The agreement, prepared by a legal practitioner and witnessed by
three witnesses was to the effect that if the appellant failed to repay the
said loan within the time stipulated therein, the appellant would forfeit the
plot of land now in dispute, covered by a certificate of occupancy No. BO/ 4265
. The appellant handed over the title documents in respect of the land to the
The appellant breached the terms and conditions of the
by his failure to repay the loan. He claimed that the said
agreement was tied to a pledge and that the title document was a security for
repayment which the respondent denied. Thus in paragraph 19 of his statement of
claim, he claimed as follows:
An order of the court setting aside the purported deed
of assignment as same is illegal, void and of no effect ab initio.
A declaration that the plaintiff is the lawful owner of
the plot of land in dispute.
A perpetual injunction restraining the defendant, his
agent, servants and purported assigns from laying any claim over or committing
further acts of trespass on the said plot of land.
Special and general damages for trespass and
destruction of the land in dispute.
Cost of this suit.
Further or other reliefs.
The defendant/respondent also
counter-claimed as follows:
An order for the payment of the N26,000.00 being rent
collected as per the judgment of the Rent Tribunal.
Special damages for trespass and destruction of plot of
land in dispute.
Cost of this suit.
Further or other relief.
court found for the respondent. Dissatisfied, the plaintiff/ appellant appealed
to the Court of Appeal.