Justice Christopher Balogun of the Ikeja High Court, Lagos has ordered accelerated hearing in the suit filed by wife of late Rear Admiral Ndubuisi Kanu, Mrs. Gladys Ndubuisi-Kanu against her stepchildren and Nigeria Navy over his estate and burial rites.
The court made the order in an ongoing proceeding of a suit filed by Mrs Gladys Ndubuisi Kanu.
In the suit, marked LD/3685FPM/2021, Mrs Gladys is seeking to be declared as the only legal wife of the late Admiral Ndubuisi Kanu.
The respondents in the suit are children of the deceased, Kelly Kanu, Nigerian Navy, Simone Abiona (Nee Kanu), Andrey Joe-Ezigbo (nee Kanu), Paula Kanu and Karen Johnson (Nee Kanu), Jeffery Kanu, Laura Kanu, Stephen Kanu and Josephine Ndubuisi Kanu.
Gladys also sought for an order of the court to declare that she is the only widow of the late Admiral Ndubuisi Kanu
She said that she and the deceased were co-habiting until his death. She noted that she was married to him for 27 years but she was with him for 31 years.
However, at the resume hearing on Monday, Justice Balogun frowned at the various interlocutory applications in the suit still pending before the court and instructed that parties should harmonise their processes to allow the matter go on.
The judge observed that since the late Ndubuisi Kanu has been buried, issues pertaining to his burial rites which were initially before the court should be set aside for the substantive application of the claimant and respondents in the matter to go on.
Mr. Tomilade Shodimu, counsel to first, third to nine defendants told the court that the court had directed that all the nine pending applications be subsume.
He noted that he received application for claimant change of counsel.
The lawyer to the Nigerian Navy, Mrs C.G Cirbam told court that she had filed an application before the court to remove the service from the list of defendants since the burial of late Ndubuisi had been done.
Her position was opposed by the claimant’s
counsel, O. Owoh, who informed that court that Nigerian Navy’s name cannot be struck out now, noting that it is still holding the entitlement of the deceased.
The court however granted accelerated hearing, noting that the two other women claiming to be wives of the deceased have children for him. The judge said that it is guided by the law and statute that all the children are entitled to benefit from their late father’s estate.
Justice Balogun further stated that there is nothing in doubt as regards the status of the children as according to the Adminsitration of Estates Law of Lagos State, all the 10 children were legitimate children of the deceased.
Subsequently the court advised parties to ensure all court processes and papers are duly regularised as the proceedings will be set for trial.
He therefore adjourned to February 7, 2022