An octogenarian, Pa Fasanya Yusuf Amoda, has appealed to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu to urgently assist his family members to have a befitting accommodation following last Tuesday’s demolition of his 47-year-old property located in Ketu, Epe by the officials of the Lagos State Food Security Systems and Logistics Hub and Rhema Construction Company without any prior notice or even compensation.
He also called on the Chairman of Ikosi Ejinrin Local Government Area, Giwa Wale Raji Anomo, to immediately offer some assistance to his family. Pa Amoda said as a resident of the local government, the council chairman should immediately assist him and his family to give them some succour.
Pa Amoda had a few days earlier raised the alarm over alleged attempt by land grabbers backed by some traditional chiefs in the area to eject him from his land/property he legally acquired over 47 years ago.
The octogenarian, who retired from the Federal Civil Service as a Senior Motor Driver Mechanic 1 in 2003, had then petitioned Governor Sanwo-Olu, to urgently intervene in the matter to stop the alleged land grabbers from throwing him and his entire family into the streets.
The distressed old man and chieftain of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), in the petition to Governor Sanwo-Olu titled, SOS: His Excellency, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, save an octogenarian from land grabbers in Ketu, Epe, Lagos State, alleged that the “indigenous land grabbers” led by a Ketu high Chief, had given his family a two-week ultimatum to quit the land and had continued to threaten him with forceful ejection if he failed to comply with their order.
Pa Amoda claimed that he’s still in possession of all documents relating to his ownership of the land/property and ready to present them whenever required to do so.
He claimed that initially when he took the matter to the Oloja of Epe, Oba Kamorudeen Ishola Animashaun, he met one High Chief Adewale Badru, Regent of the town, who promised in the presence of the monarch that adequate compensation would be paid to him for the land and a befitting structure would be erected for him and his family elsewhere once they quit the land.
Pa Amoda, however, accused High Chief Adewale Badru of reneging on his promise and only stormed his house recently to issue a two-week ultimatum to him and his family members to quit the land without the payment of any compensation.
According to him, the land/property is currently worth about N22million.
He said it was, therefore, shocking that Badru would offer him a paltry N1m to relocate from his legally acquired land/property after 47 years of ownership and occupation.
The octogenarian, had therefore, in his petition appealed to Governor Sanwo-Olu to urgently intervene in the matter to save him from being rendered homeless at his advanced age by the alleged land grabbers.
A copy of Pa Amoda’s petition to Governor Sanwo-Olu was made available to our correspondent.
But on Tuesday, the matter took another dimension as a demolition team of the Lagos State Food Security Systems and Logistics Hub and Rhema Construction Company arrived at the location of Pa Amoda’s house and subsequently brought down the 47-year-old structures without giving the octogenarian and his family members any prior notice of demolition or even any form of monetary compensation.
This unfortunate development has thrown Pa Amoda and his entire family members into the open street, leaving them at the mercy of weather elements. Having nowhere else to go, the old man, his hypertensive wife and other family members have continued to spend their days and pass their nights in the cold and rain.
The family belongings strewn around the demolished property are also now being destroyed by rain.
Lamenting the development, distraught Pa Amoda said, “Your Excellency, Governor Sanwo-Olu and all Nigerians, help my family! All I worked for for 35 years as a civil servant is destroyed within minutes, everything is gone. I’m left with nothing, nowhere to sleep with my family at over 80 years of age. My one plot of land I legally bought and on which I built 12 rooms, three shops and boreholes with two reserve tanks with which I’ve been raising funds to feed my family of five children and 12 grandchildren, everything now gone and I’m back to zero! Oh God, how do I do it, where do I go from here now? I’m confused! Governor Sanwo-Olu, I urgently need your assistance. I’m dying now, my wife is hypertensive. She’s dying as well.
“When the demolition team came, I called our traditional ruler, the Oloja of Epe to intervene. Kabiyesi said he had tried his best to appeal to them to do something better for me.
“Your Excellency, Governor Sanwo-Olu, I’m not fighting the government and I cannot fight the government over this matter. All I need urgently now is your assistance for my family to have another befitting accommodation and save us from suffering. This is the rainy season now and we’re left in the rain. I’m a chieftain of the APC in my area and I significantly contributed to the victory of our party in the last elections in the state. I’m also a stakeholder in this state and so I’m interested in the success of our Governor’s administration in Lagos State and the general development of Nigeria.”
Pa Amoda, while further lamenting his loss of the property, disclosed that his late mother’s grave is also on the land where his demolished house was erected.
“I don’t know what to do about my mother’s grave on this land. I can’t start exhuming her remains now. She’s been dead and buried here for so many years now,” he said.
The ailing wife of the octogenarian, Mrs Toyin Fasanya, also pleaded with the Governor to show mercy to the family by urgently coming to their assistance for another accommodation.
She said, “I’m Baba’s wife. Nigerians please help us. I’m hypertensive, I take drip everyday and now, I’ve been sleeping in the open in the rain since Tuesday when they demolished our only house. Our lives are at great risk now. Please, help me and my aged husband so that we don’t die suddenly over this unfortunate development at our advanced ages.
“Infact, as I am now, I can commit suicide because we no longer have any roof under which we can lay our heads. We have nobody. Governor Sanwo-Olu and Nigerians, help us!
One of Pa Amoda’s children, Omolola Fasanya, who was weeping profusely, told our correspondent at the scene of the demolished family property that the octogenarian and his wife have grown too old and would need government assistance to enable them to have another befitting accommodation.
She said her parents are too old to embark on any work from which they would have enough money to build another house on their own without government’s assistance.
She lamented, “They have demolished our father’s house. The government should have mercy on us. Our father is very old now and we, his children, have our individual responsibilities. Our father and mother are very old and they can’t do any work again. The fruits of their entire labour in life is what they have demolished now. Nigerians should, please, come to our aid. We have nowhere else to go. All our belongings are now outside in the open where we sleep in the rain.”
Efforts by our correspondent to speak with the officials of the agency that carried out the demolition probed abortive.