Residents of Ire Akari Estate in the Soka area of Ibadan, Oyo State, have appealed to the state government and the police to come to their aid over some suspected land grabbers who reportedly invaded the community, demolishing houses and threatening to attack them.
The Chairman, Ire Akari Landlord Association, Adetunji Adelani, said representatives of some families stormed the community with suspected thugs on June 13, 2018.
“They came with a court judgment which they said ceded some parts of the estate to the four families. We tried to calm them but they were violent. They demolished some houses and locked the estate gate. It was later discovered that the judgment does not cover most of the areas they are claiming.
“They later said that we should start paying N200,000 on each of the plots we occupy. To give peace a chance, some agreed to the term but the thugs still hang around the estate. We have gone to the palace of the Olubadan of Ibadan land, Oba Saliu Adetunji, to complain.
“We have equally notified the state government of the development. We appeal to relevant security agencies to come to our aid as we no longer feel safe under the threat of these people.”
Among the houses affected was a storey building belonging to a former regional head, First Bank Nigeria Plc, Bola Adetula, 84.
The Vice Chancellor of Technical University, Ibadan, Prof. Ayobami Salami, was said to have vacated the area for his safety.
When contacted, one of the parties that secured the judgment, Femi Majekodunmi, said he had less than five per cent of the land and that occupiers had agreed to pay. He added that the case was handled by the chamber of Afe Babalola.
“No one has been harassed on the portion that belongs to me. No violence recorded. I am a medical doctor and politician, I will not do what is against the law,” he said.
Mohammed Asuni, who was employed by the families to carry out the order, denied bringing thugs to the community.
He said, “What the landlords are saying is not true. I have a name to protect and I will not involve myself in pulling down people’s buildings. I don’t want to say more than that.”