The gates of phase two, Magodo estate in Lagos, have been reopened following a siege laid by police officers in a move to demolish some houses in the area.
TheCable had reported that some police officers, said to have been accompanied by hoodlums, arrived at the estate with bulldozers on Tuesday evening.
The hoodlums marked some houses in the estate with the inscription which reads ‘ID/795/88 possession taken today 21/12/2021 by court order’.
On Wednesday morning, members of the Magodo Residents’ Association (MRA) locked up the gates leading to the exit and entry points of the estate in a bid to resist what they described as “forceful takeover” and attempt to demolish houses in the area.
The development left some residents stranded as no human or vehicular movement was allowed in and out of the estate.
However, when TheCable visited the estate on Wednesday afternoon, the two gates of the estate were opened with people and vehicles moving freely.
There were also no police officers seen around the gates of the estate.
Speaking with journalists, Tunji Abdulhameed, legal adviser of MRA, said residents of the estate are not aware of any court verdict issued in favour of the Shangisha Landlords Association to demolish houses in the community.
Abdulhameed said the only court verdict residents are aware of is to the effect that the Lagos government should allocate 549 plots of land to the Shangisha association.
“We are not aware of any court order which allows for any demolition of properties in this estate. We asked them to show us papers, they refused to show us the paper,” he said.
“We are aware that they obtained an order against the Lagos state government, the judgement which people believe is fake as no specific definition and no properties were mentioned.
“What the judgement said is that the Lagos state government should allocate 549 plots to them. As at today, no plot has been allocated. Until the plots are allocated to them, that is when they become property owners.
“All the properties you see here, those who own the properties obtained allocations from the Lagos state government and they obtained certificates of occupancy to that effect. And those certificates are still valid; they have not been revoked.
“That is what we are trying to put across. We want the world to see what we are facing because the government has not come to protect us.
“Thankfully, they later came today — people from the governor. I think they are still around to ensure that the police that came from FCT through the IGP are out of the state. That is why the gates are open.”
Also, Bajo Osinubi, chairman of MRA, said they decided to open the estate’s gates owing to the promise made by Babajide Sanwo-Olu, governor of Lagos, that the state is “on top of the case”.
“We opened the gate about an hour ago because we had a promise from the governor of Lagos state, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, that he is on top of the case,” Osinubi said.
“Actually, he (referring to the governor) sent in the mayoress of Ikosi, Mrs Bada, to come and tell us that the policemen will be withdrawn and this siege that has become perennial will never happen again.
“So, with that promise, we decided to open up the gates so that our people can move.”