Home » Boko Haram, Headlines, Lagos, State News » Boko Haram Scare Sparks Demolition in Lagos

Boko Haram Scare Sparks Demolition in Lagos



By Gboyega Akinsanmi

Operatives of the Lagos State Task Force on Environment and Other Special Offences stormed Agege area of the state Sunday, demolishing shanties and structures built along the rail line and drainage channels owing to what was ascribed to the constant scare of Boko Haram attacks in Lagos.

Chairman of the task force, Mr. Bayo Suleiman, who led the operatives to carry out the demolition affecting over 25 buildings which were allegedly constructed illegally on the drainage channels, stated that the exercise was carried out in the interest of over 18 million residents of the state.

Suleiman, who justified the demolition of the shanties along the rail line, explained that the exercise became important following constant threats of the Boko Haram scare, which he said the state government had to take as preventive measures to guarantee safety of lives and properties in Lagos metropolis.

Suleiman also stated that the shanties were demolished early in the year, though the occupants returned to the area during the elections, adding that the affected area could definitely provide a hiding place for individuals to carry out nefarious activities.

Speaking with journalists, Suleiman, a Superintendent of Police, said the directive to demolish the buildings was from Governor Babatunde Fashola following what the state experienced on July 10 as a result of the heavy rain that affected lives and properties.

He said after the visit of the governor on July 11, property built on the drainage channels “were marked for demolition and the occupants were given a token to enable them relocate to other places. They were all duly informed about the demolition and we are here to carry out the demolition”.

The exercise also led to the displacement of scores of Lagos residents and affected different categories of people including children and the aged who were scampering to get some of their personal effects out of the demolished buildings before bulldozer brought down the buildings.

Some of the affected residents stood afar, watching their property crashing down during the operation that lasted two hours.

Some were fighting their tears back while making efforts to move their belongings, ranging from electronic sets, beddings and clothing, away from the demolished structures.

An octogenarian, Mrs. Victoria Osho, watched the demolition in tears and wailing, though some women and youths assisted her to move out some of her belongings.

The octogenarian told journalists that the notice of the demolition caught the affected residents unawares, tearfully lamenting that she had nowhere else to lay her head now that her building had been brought down.
Another resident, Mr. Nurudeen Rasaq, also lamented the exercise, which, he said, had displaced a good number of Lagos residents, especially the aged homeless, though he acknowledged that the state government had notified them earlier about the plan to demolish the buildings along the axis.

However, Rasaq complained that the enforcement team did not stick to the arrangement made with the residents. According to him, when the state government notified them about the demolition, it was said then that the entire buildings would not be demolished and that about six to eight metres would be affected.

He said none of the landlords “received anything. The people that received money were tenants. They collected the forms when the government enumeration team visited. How much is even N50,000? More so, most of the landlords were not aware of the form in the first place. Some had left for their various places of work. We only got to know about the money when they came to inform us in Alausa”.


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Posted by on Oct 3 2011. Filed under Boko Haram, Headlines, Lagos, State News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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