The Supreme Court on Friday partly resolved the ownership dispute in 17 oil wells ownership in favour of the Rivers State government.
In a judgement prepared by Justice Ellen Ogunwumiju but delivered by justice Emmanuel Agim, the apex court dismissed the counter claim ownership put forward by the Imo State government.
The court in its judgement also ended the political arrangement on the sharing of revenue from the oil wells.
The apex court ruled that the oil wells located in Ndoni and Egbema communities belong to Rivers in its verdict.
The Supreme Court, had February 2022 fixed May 6 for judgment in the legal battle between Rivers and Imo states over the ownership of 17 oil wells in their territories.
The plaintiff in the matter, represented by a former President of the Nigerian Bar Association, Joseph Daudu (SAN), while adopting his final address, asked the apex court to give judgment in favour of Rivers State on the grounds that historical evidence right from 1927 till date clearly indicated that the oil wells belongs to the state.
Daudu drew the attention of the Supreme Court to the boundary adjustment paper of 1976, where Ndoni and Egbema were confirmed to belong to Rivers State.
He disagreed with the Attorney-General of the Federation in his claim that adjudication in the suit ought not to have originated from the Supreme Court but a Federal High Court, because oral evidence ought to be taken from the people of the area.
Daudu said the Supreme Court had original jurisdiction and could conveniently use all available sufficient historical documents right from the colonial era to determine the real owners of the oil wells.
In his own arguments, counsel for Imo State, Chief Olusola Oke (SAN), asked the apex court to dismiss the suit on the grounds that it ought to have originated from the Federal High Court.
Oke claimed that because of the nature of the matter, oral evidence ought to be called from the people of the area to confirm where they actually belong.
According to him, Rivers State ought not to have started the suit from the Supreme Court and he prayed the court to dismiss it.
In the same vein, counsel for the AGF, Dr Remi Olatubora (SAN), aligned himself with the position of Imo State to the effect that proper procedure for such a suit was not adopted by Rivers State.