Edo State-born multi-billionaire oil magnate and industrialist, Chief Leemon Ikpea and his wife, Mrs. Agnes Ikpea are currently entangled in messy divorce scandal that have set the two at each other jugular.
BIGPENNGR understands the 39 years marriage bliss between the couple became messy after Ikpea who is the Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of Lee Engineering and Construction Company, obtained a court order on 17th February, 2021 to evict his estranged wife from their palatial home in Banana Island, Lagos.
The order followed a divorce suit filed with Suit No. B/747D/2020 before Honourable Justice Joseph Itsebaga Acha, the second most senior Judge in the Edo State High Court hierarchy.
It was learnt that following a motion for an accelerated hearing of the divorce suit which was adjourned to 3rd of March, 2021, Justice Acha on Wednesday ruled that the court has not withheld its previous ruling which it said still subsist pending the determination on the motion on notice.
Justice Acha further stated that the court was yet to receive the decision of the Chief Judge of the State, Hon. Justice Esther Edigin upon the petition vide by the respondent, Mrs. Agnes Ikpea.
BIGPENNGR recalls that the estranged Mrs Ikpea had filed a petition against Justice Acha alleging bias in his handling of the case and jurisdiction of the suit instituted in Benin City by Chief Ikpea, who is said to be domiciled in Lagos alongside his wife.
But Justice Acha, in the resumed hearing called on counsel not to misinform the public through the media as it would lead to the destruction of the judicial Institution, just as he maintained that he cannot be subjected to cheap blackmail in the press.
Meanwhile, the subsisting ruling of the court after submissions from Counsels of both parties granted the prayers of the petitioner, Chief Leemon Ikpea that the Respondent, Mrs. Agnes Ikpea to relocate to an alternative apartment apart from the Banana Island in Lagos in order for them to be alive to face the substantive suit on motion.
The court however made no order to cost but restrained the Respondent from confronting, molesting, harassing, intimidating and causing or threatening violence against the Petitioner, domestic and business staff, relatives, friends or interfering with the petitioners business or domestic life pending the determination of the substantive petition.
Multiple reports claimed that Mrs Ikpea, mother of six had been in a hot romance with a driver under the employment of her super rich husband who is from Edo Central Senatorial District of Edo state.
According to one of the reports, the lady (Agnes), was alleged to have publicly gone stark naked in protest over the recent sack of the driver.
One of the reports claimed that the 54 years old billionaire’s wife could not hide her romantic feelings for the driver who was disengaged by Chief Ikpea after he was arrested by the police in Lagos with Indian hemp.
“In solidarity with her secret lover, the billionaire’s wife outrightly rejected the new driver that her super rich husband employed to replace her lover boy driver, an action that further fuelled suspicions about her illicit love affair with the recalcitrant driver”, sources privy to the happenings were quoted to have said.
A source further disclosed that one of the reasons the marriage has broken down irredeemable was the fact that ‘philandering’ billionaire’s wife had shunned invitation by elders in the village to explain her reason for going naked over the sack of the driver.
But according to report in THISDAY, Chief Ikpea’s marital bliss with his wife, Agnes, began to sour when he married a younger lady named Tina Ochuko sometime in 2002 under native law and custom, and thereafter, moved his new bride into his sprawling mansion in Banana Island, Ikoyi, Lagos, where he resided for many years with both women.
However, last year, in a fit of anger, Chief Lee Ikpea was said to have told his older wife, Agnes, that he wanted a divorce from her. This is notwithstanding that, Catholics who marry in a Catholic Church and under the Marriage Act, are not known to entertain thoughts of divorce.
This informed why Chief Lee Ikpea instituted proceedings at the High Court of Edo State, sitting in Benin City, raising curiosity as to why the matter was heard in Benin City, whereas he and his wife both reside in Lagos, and do not have any connection with Benin City.