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Enugu: We demolished building based on order of court

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Chairman of the Enugu Capital Territory Development Authority (ECTDA), Mr Umunnakwe Onoh has said that the demolition of the residence of Architect John Emejuru was not a “retaliatory action” but strictly in compliance with a court order approving the demolition.

He stated that the illegal twin duplexes located at Eziokwe Street, Community Estate, off Nike Lake Resort road, Trans Ekulu was standing on a water channel and needed to give way for easy flow of water.

Emejuru had on Wednesday in an attempt to execute an alleged court order demolished about three kilometers of newly built perimeter walls being part of the ongoing rehabilitation at the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu, a development that triggered reactions in the state.

He had claimed that the portion was part of the 400 plots of land he bought from the Nike community in 2008.

On Friday however, officials of the ECTDA had moved its men and materials to his (Emejuru’s) residence and pulled down the structures on the ground that it had not allowed free flow of water in the area and after it obtained the nod of the court to do so.

Reports had erroneously linked the action of the ECTDA as “reprisal”, alleging that the twin duplex built in 2012 had an approved plan and was not blocking the water way.

It was however gathered that officials of the ECTDA had severally served “quit order” and marked the property for demolition before now.

Onoh said yesterday that the action of his agency had nothing to do with pulling down of airport fence, a property belonging to the federal government.

He said: “I was not on revenge. He destroyed federal government property which he has to sort out with the federal government, but this is a state function, exercising control of unapproved structures. He was duly given 21 days notice and he was properly served.

“The property stood on a water way and it had to go. There is another building close to that one, on the same street, which has already been marked for demolition, tenants in that one have already moved out because the property already has severe cracks from the foundation and we are going to pull it down very soon.

“If you are observant, you would have noted that the Enugu Capital Territory has been carrying out control measures in Enugu capital city and Emejuru’s property cannot be an exception, despite whatever axe he has to grind with the federal government”

He stated that the agency in carrying the demolition had relied on the order of the Enugu High Court, which was duly served on Emejulu, stressing that “we had prayed the court to authorize the demolition of the respondent’s (Emejulu) illegal structure located at No 23/24 Eziokwe street, community estate, Enugu with code no. 003005835 and this was granted by the court”

The court order obtained by the Guardian was given by Justice P.C Amalu


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