Why we rejected Lagos master plan review, by Magodo residents
Plans by the Lagos State New Towns Development Authority (NTDA) to review Magodo 1 and 11 schemes and introduce a mixed-use development have been resisted by the residents.
The Guardian learnt that the state has through its consultant; Messrs MOLAJ concluded review of the master plan for the exclusive residential estate done between 1960 and the early 70s.
In the draft copy sighted by The Guardian, the new land use for the estate will cover 2018 till 2028 .
From the draft plan, some of the areas are delineated to accommodate up to three floors, where others will accommodate four floors.
There was also provisions for the dredging of the canal and wet lands slated for further development, while more access roads are proposed for the otherwise gated estate.
Already, the state on April 1, staged a stakeholders meeting, where the plan was to be presented for final acceptance with approved order and number of plots already allotted.
But the executive members of Magodo Residents’ Association (MRA), walked out of the meeting on the ground that they were not carried along during the process.
A town planner and a resident, Mr. Rotimi Abdul said the residents would have been boxed into a tight corner of they do not walk out.
He explained that such development plan should be from bottom to top as seen in civilized environment.
Abdul lamented the government will be thinking of such plan without the inputs from the residents, who are directly involved.
But the General Manager of NTDA, Mr. Wasiu Akewusola in statement said the review of Magodo 11 Residential Scheme was done to legalise the illegal conversion of residential buildings to other uses.
In the statement, he alleged that he residents had already turned the area into mixed use with illegal conversion of residential buildings to schools and offices, hence the move by government to review the developmental plan.
However, addressing the media on the matter the residents said the statement was untrue, false and misleading as the residents as an association has always fought against further commercialization of the estate.
Chairman of MRA, Mr. Jade Niboro said, the association has in 2013 came up with a commercial policy aimed at stopping the conversion of residential properties to commercial use and fought all those who attempted to convert their properties to other uses with most reverting to the original use.
The residents, he said, also staged protest against a financial institution, a car wash and a school in 2016 as well as wrote letters and petitions signed by at least 2000 to former Governor Babatunde Fashola and the incumbent, Akinwunmi Ambode stating their stance against commercialization of the estate.
According to him, the recent action of the government seems that some interests are bent on distorting facts for their selfish and person interests as they have not seen any estate where all distributing roads were turned into commercial corridor.
Niboro reiterated that the residents will resist anybody or group of people whether internally or under the guise of government from destroying their estate because of its serious security and environmental implications.
“ Magodo11 has always been a quiet residential estate, we will not want our estate to go the way of Lekki 11 scheme and Ikeja GRA that have been bastardised. People from those estates are now finding haven in Magodo and moving out en-masse from Lekki”, he added.
Also the 2nd vice chairman of MRA, Mrs. Kemi Omotoso said the incursion of the wetlands by the Lagos state government has already led to the invasion of their homes by monkeys, reptiles and other dangerous animals.
She urged the state government to rescind from the planned commercialization of the estate and incursion of the wetlands to save the environment, the eco-system as well as restore the peace of the coveted estate.
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