The week started out looking very hopeful but ended up mirroring the proverbial tale of Solomon Grundy who was born on Monday but due to a series of unfortunate events, was no more by the end of the week. Let me explain before you panic. This story centers on a choice piece of land on the Island, in which I was given the direct brief by a client who wanted to buy a house in Lekki, but wanted my company to sell their land first, which was approximately the cost of the house , which would be paid for in full, if the land as sold. She explained that all the papers were up to date and in order and was in her and her husband’s name. Armed with this information and the fact that she had assured me it was direct through my company, I thought nothing could go wrong, I was so wrong!
I managed to find an interested buyer for the land, through some Lawyer colleagues, who expressed immediate interest for a client of theirs. I arranged a meeting at the site of the land and called to confirm with the owners that they could meet us there. The owner said she could not make the meeting, but would send her husband’s brother, who had been trying to sell the same piece land for almost one year! She said he had all the necessary land documents to give us to carry out searches. This took me by surprise, as I had expected that my company would be the only agents in this transaction. She explained that s he had been involved previously on her husband’s instructions, she could not cut him out!? This was the first warning sign that all was not well. The title documents for the land had the relevant names blacked out for some strange reason! When I asked the owner, she said she was not aware of this, but would check with her husband’s brother. He rang me up to say that the papers were not fully in order and there were some outstanding charges that need to be paid first, before the land could be sold, so he could not reveal the name of the owners. The Lawyers carrying out the search on the land, found the withholding of the name odd, but had proceeded with the search and got the information they needed to proceed with the sale, less the outstanding land charges.
For some reason, the fact that the purchasers lawyers had found out about the outstanding land charges and were querying this with the owners brother, seemed not to sit well with the brother. He said he was settling this directly with the land owners. I had been on the phone constantly with my client seeking clarification and updates on what was going on. She seemed not to be aware of the outstanding charges. She informed me there was now a lawyer from husband who was now involved and had a found purchaser? I was gob smacked and told her I had a client who wanted to buy the land immediately! I rang the purchasers’ lawyers who got on to the phone to the landlords lawyers, but hit a brick wall. It was clear there as something underhand happening here.
I received a call from my client this morning to say her husband felt I was her friend and she was doing the land transaction with me because of this. She said ‘I am tired, I don’t understand how you Yoruba people operate, I can’t continue with this any longer.’ So, my dear readers, this is how a potential land transaction was terminated. People widely believe politics is a dirty business, I can safely confirm that the property transaction business is just as, or if not dirtier.