‘Govt to blame for Lekki mayhem’
Taju Disu’s death a personal loss, says Akiolu
THE Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu, yesterday told the tribunal investigating the civil unrest that occurred at Ibeju-Lekki area of Lagos State on October 12, 2015, that insincerity caused the mayhem that led to the death of the Managing Director of Lekki Worldwide Investment Limited, Alhaji Tajudeen Disu.
He blamed the state government, management of Lekki Investment Worldwide as well as Dangote Investment for the crisis between communities at Ibeju-Lekki and investors at the Lekki Free Trade Zone.
It would be recalled that Disu, a policeman and two others were reportedly killed while resolving a land dispute between the irate villagers who were protesting against what they called ‘forceful takeover’ of their land and private companies involved in various projects within the Lekki Free Trade Zone (LFTZ).
The Lagos State governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, thereafter set up a five-man l panel to investigate the cause of the crisis. At the resumed hearing yesterday, Oba Akiolu in his testimony, said insincerity on the part of government caused the crisis.
According to him, “I came to the tribunal when I heard about the matter in the media. I was instrumental to the coming of the late Disu to come and assist the state government. If I had known that he would meet untimely death, I wouldn’t have allowed him to come.
“What happened at Lekki is insincerity on the part of government and investors. These villagers are native people but have been disposed of their land, which they use for survival. The government has fault. There ought to have been adequate public enlightenment on what government wants to do for the villagers. The state government claimed some people who had been given money came back to request for more money but were not given. The $100million Dangote Company gave them was inadequate.”
The Oba also blamed the community for taking laws into their hand. “The people are uneducated and were doing the right thing in a wrong way. Majority of the landowners in the whole of Lekki don’t want to work, they only want to sell lands.”
He, however, urged government and investors to carry the people along by making them shareholders in their companies. “Any company that comes to take land must ensure that at least five percent shares of the company is reserved for landowners while their children should be trained in school.
“Government should also talk to Alhaji Dangote to talk to the people. Proper remuneration for the people for their crop must be done while well known people should be involved when money will be given to the community,” he stated.