LASBCA Officials Accused of IgnoringCourt Order, Sanwo-Olu’s Directive

Wale Igbintade

Residents of Kenneth Odidika Close in Eti-Osa Local Government Area of Lagos State have accused the Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA) of colluding with some individuals to forcefully take over plots of land in the area.

They also accused LASBCA of disregarding a court order to maintain status quo pending the determination of a suit filed against the Agency, and also the directive of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu.

Speaking on behalf of the aggrieved residents, a Lagos-based lawyer, Kenneth Odidika, appealed to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu to call officials of the Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA) to order over alleged plot to dispossess them of thier property.

The lawyer who made the appeal while addressing journalists stated that from the onset, LASBCA had been struggling to find reasons to dispossess him and his neighbours of their properties and each time they countered their claims LASBCA would look for another reason to harass them.

According to Odidika, early in December 2022, LASBCA informed them that a certain company, Minkus Nigeria Limited (the Petitioner), is claiming that we were squatters on their land.

He said “They subsequently served us with Contravention Notice, and we successfully showed we were authentic residents. Then they said we didn’t have Development Permits. We produced our Permits, including C of O and Governor’s Consent which they duly acknowledged.

“Thereafter the Petitioner went to court to challenge our title. We responded with proof of ownership, forcing them to withdraw the case from court. We thought we were going to have some respite, but then again LASBCA came with the issue of building outside approved design, and fortunately for us, HE the Governor of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwolu, announced a 90-day amnesty window effective May 2, 2024 for people to make good such shortcomings.

‘We immediately applied for assessment and processing, but LASBCA refused to attend to us saying that there is a directive that they should not accept drawings and documents from the Maiyegun and Ologolo (families) for processing as the land was in dispute.

“In view of this, we promptly obtained an Order of Court on May 30, 2024 directing all parties to maintain status quo pending the determination of the case. However, they refused to obey the court order. The 90-day amnesty window is yet to expire, yet LASBCA came again on June 11, 2023 to mark our houses for demolition for the third time, foreclosing the possibility of any of us taking advantage of the amnesty graciously given by HE which incidentally is meant to expire on July 31, 2024.”

Odidika further claimed that neither his building nor those of the other people in Kenneth Odidika Close stands on any water channel or any sort of right of way.

He maintained that the alleged contravention is blatantly false as LASBCA has already confirmed that he had a genuine Development Permit dated 4th of April, 2006.

He claimed to have completed and parked into his house in 2006, when there was no LASBCA, and wondered how he could have failed to obtain a certificate from a body that was not in existence, having been created by 2010 law and came into being in 2012.

The residents affected by these harassment are insisting that the period of the Amnesty granted by Governor Sanwa-Olu has not expired and see no cause to rush to try to force people out of their houses with the threat of illegal demolition.

They are craving the indulgence of governor Sanwo-Olu to direct the relevant Department of the Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development to accept their documentations and permit them to pay the relevant processing fee.

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