Kojo Adjepong V. Kwaku Fokuo & Anor (1945)
LawGlobal Hub Judgment Report – West African Court of Appeal
Claim for declaration as co-owner of leasehold property and that property held in trust by 1st Defendant-Appellant—Lease transferred by Plaintiff and 1st Appellant to 2nd Appellant to safeguard property from execution by creditors—Parties to contract against Public Policy—Whether or not “in pari delicto “—Fraud and collusion indulged in by Appellants—Advancement of Public Policy.
In this case the plaintiff-respondent claimed a declaration that he is co-owner with the 1st defendant-appellant of certain leasehold property in Kumasi, and that the 2nd defendant-appellant, whose name is entered as lessee of the property in the Lands Department, Kumasi, holds the same in trust for the plaintiff-respondent and 1st defendant-appellant.
The case eventually reached the West African Court of Appeal, by which it was remitted to the Chief Commissioner’s Court for trial de novo, on the ground that averments of breach of trust, collusion and fraud made by the plaintiff had never been investigated, and +required investigation.
Having regard to the conduct of the parties they are not in rani delicto and public policy is advanced by allowing Plaintiff relief. A declaration that property is jointly owned by Respondent and 1st Appellant as equitable co-owners and that 2nd Appellant holds it in trust.