Suspected hoodlums destroy FG housing scheme, injure workers
By Friday Omosola
Suspected hoodlums have invaded the Federal Government Housing Scheme and destroyed buildings and property worth millions of naira in Akure, the Ondo State capital. It is located at Alagbaka Government Reservation Area (GRA).
They injured the employees on the site while some escaped with injuries. The Trumpet gathered that the armed thugs who overran the ongoing Federal Government Housing Scheme around 9.00 am, fired several gunshots and demolished the construction works that were ongoing.
Also, it was gathered that the thugs destroyed plumbing pipes while over five Storex tanks were broken. Speaking to journalists, the Managing Director of the company handling the project, Medaville Building & Construction Co. Ltd, Otunba Ademola AkinBenson, accused a monarch (name withheld) as the sponsor of the attack. Akin-Benson claimed that the monarch has been making unlawful moves to snatch the land from the company and stop the project by allegedly sending thugs.
He complained that over N50 million had been lost to the regular attacks by the thugs who periodically dropped charms and other fetish objects on the site to scare him and the labourers.
Akin-Benson asserted that where the monarch claimed as a community land was far away and not the area where work was going on in line with existing court judgment. He alleged that the monarch even sent his thugs to kidnap some workers recently which was reported to the police and appropriate authorities.
He said: ” They came here on the 18th of this month with two bikes, beat, harassed the workers; destroyed many building materials.”
The Managing Director explained that the land is owned by the Federal Government but handed over to Medaville Building & Construction Co. Ltd to develop.
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He noted that the matter was already in court, saying: “He has been served but trying to dodge it; it is always like this. We will not take any law into our hands.
We will continue to pursue the case to the highest level.” Akin-Benson, revealed that two different trials have been established to check the monarch’s excesses. Describing the thugs actions as disturbance of the peace of the community, he said the project is to ease housing problems in Ondo State, stressing that the Federal Government is aware of the harassment and destruction.
Contacted, the monarch through his Chief Press Secretary, debunked the claim. He alleged that Akin Benson hired thugs and refusef to pay them their fee , sparking the crisis and demolition witnessed at the site.
He said the former was only trying to point fingers rather than blame himself for the miseries he caused himself. “There was a disputed five hectares of land belonging to Akure and the court had asked him(Otunba Benson) not to work on the disputed area but only on the approved 15 hectares.
We expect him to abide by the decision of the Court over the matter. “The palace had no hand in the in-fight that occurred between the thugs he engaged on the land,” he said.
The king said Akure would not do anything that would disrupt its peace, but what would bring development and expansion. The monarch urged the managing director to desist from blackmailing him and see Akure as a peaceful and accommodative land.