Ogun vows to deal with land grabbers, threats to public peace
• As hoodlums invade community, beat village head
Ogun State government has reassured that it would not tolerate the activities of land grabbers in the state, vowing to deal with anyone found culpable with the full wrath of law.
The state’s Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Alhaji Waheed Odusile, who disclosed this yesterday, said government would not take it lightly with anyone claiming the ownership of another person’s land illegally.
He said: “The activities of land grabbers are not welcomed in Ogun State. The government will not take it lightly with anybody found to be involved in maiming or grabbing of land; they would be dealt with according to the law.
“Governor Dapo Abiodun has said it clearly, and I’m reiterating it, that the law would be used to deal with anyone threatening the peace of the state. So, if it is land grabbers that are threatening the peace of the state, they will be dealt with through the instrumentality of the law.”
Odusile was speaking on the heels of recent activities of some alleged land grabbers, who invaded Adumbu community in Ewekoro Local Council with about 50 thugs, injuring two people and beating up the village head.
It was alleged that a notorious land grabber invaded the town with thugs armed with dangerous weapons including cutlass, broken bottles, axes, chasing people away from their homes and ancestral lands in the community.
The residents of the community in a “Save Our Soul” letter to the police titled: “Case of Conspiracy, Threat To Life and Invasion of Adumbu Village By Land Grabbers”, and jointly signed by an elder in the village, Dr. Dele Onatade, and the Secretary, Chief Ranti Falola, asked the police to come to their rescue.
They alleged that the land grabber and his cohorts had been terrorising and threatening the peace of the community for over 10 years, when they invaded the village and sacked the entire community, including the late village head, Chief Olalekan Ogunjobi over 4,000 hectares of land.
The residents said the land grabber, who was earlier declared wanted by the police, ran away, only to resurface this year to continue his land grabbing activities, by first trying to take over the possession of seven acres of land meant to build primary school for the community and later claiming the possession of other people’s lands.
According to the residents, all efforts by the new village head, Chief Kayode Falola to restore peace was thwarted by the land grabber, when he allegedly led thugs to a block-making factory owned by the village head, beat him to stupor and arrested him with the aide of some police men allegedly from Zone 2, Headquarters, Onikan, Lagos.
Speaking on the matter, Falola alleged that the land grabber also went with his thugs to attack the secretary of the village, Chief Ranti Falola, at his house, manhandled him and tore his cloth before they dragged him into the same police vehicle they put him in and drove both of them off to Zone 2, Onikan, Lagos.
The village head also alleged that the duo of Saula Sobogun and Riliwon Adegbayo were beaten and afflicted machete cuts on their body by the land grabber and his hoodlums who they accused of supporting the village elders, while claiming that all land in the community belongs to him.
The village head also alleged that the thugs equally visited the office of Sobogun and descended on him heavily, inflicting machete cuts on his body and left him fainted only for some good Samaritans in the village to rescue him.
Noting that he had reported the case to the Olu of Itori, Oba Akorede Akamo, he said he is yet to see any meaningful results as the land grabber’s thugs have continued to disrupt the peace of the community.
He, however, appealed to the State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, to rescue the community from the land grabbers.
But, the alleged land grabber denied the allegation, saying that he didn’t lead any thug to Adumbu village.
“They are only lying against me. I built my house in that community and I have my family there, it’s not true,” he said.