Property owners and locals of Oluwa Palace community, in the Ibeju Lekki Local Government Area of Lagos State, have alleged that officers of the Lagos State Environment and Special Offences Enforcement Unit and hoodlums destroyed their houses and rendered them derelict.
According to reports, about 50 properties were demolished by the policemen and hoodlums. The properties which were destroyed included houses, shops and others. The properties are said to be worth millions of naira. The protestants bewailed and said they were not given prior notice to the demolition of their properties.
One of the residents who lamented on the demolition of buildings in the area said one of the properties that were destroyed belongs to his uncle and they spent about 300 million naira on the property. He stated that they had some belongings in the building before it was demolished and they still have not been able to excavate them. He expressed the condition of his uncle who is traumatized by the demolition of his property.
The head of the Oluwa Palace Community also said, “We took the state government to court in 2009 when it attempted to take over the land. We knew then that there was no way to lawfully challenge the government other than going to court.
The community head added that the verdict of the court of law was in their favor and it was registered with the government. He said they were given a warrant of possession and they had been living there until the police and hoodlums invaded the community.
“We wrote to the Attorney General of the state to ensure that the judgment was duly obeyed. He constituted a committee and made Bode Agoro the chairman of the committee. From the first day that we had those meetings, Agoro never betrayed his bias against the Oluwa family”
“When we asked him what he wanted, he said he would give the family 58 hectares out of 300 hectares and we felt that was not right. The last time we held a meeting was November last year, and because of his attitude, my client felt we should sue him and the Attorney General.”
The task force represented by a spokesperson has debunked the allegations of the protestants.