Breaking: Lagos Assembly To Hold Public Hearing On Land Grabbing.

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– writes Olubadan-in-council over monarch’s demise

– holds a minute silence for soldiers killed in Delta

The menace of land grabbing was a major topic for debate on the floor of the Lagos State House of Assembly on Tuesday with lawmakers agreeing that a public hearing be organised as part of urgent solutions.

The planned stakeholders’ meeting would be all-encompassing involving the state government, the police, the judiciary, traditional rulers and others.

Speaker of the House, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa, said land grabbing has become “a serious issue that is beyond disturbing. It is chaotic. Many people have been killed, some maimed and some locked up without trial just because of the existence of some people who have turned themselves to land grabbers.”

Dr. Obasa frowned at cases where land speculators write petitions and with the connivance of security officials, the real owners of the properties are arrested, taken to Abuja and forced to sign undertakings that would bar them from the same land they bought from their toiling.

The Speaker, who said these land grabbers often attack new and developing areas in Ikorodu, Epe, Ojo and others, added: “I wonder how somebody would just invade people’s properties and still exude such boldness and confidence, kill the owner or bring police.”

Obasa, recalling his own experience sometime ago, further added: “what do you think of the fate of a resident who struggles to own a property, struggle to start building on it only for somebody to just suddenly take over the land making life difficult for him?”

He also raised concerns over delays and multiple judgements from courts while urging the state government to consider commensurate compensations for land owners whose properties are taken over in overriding public interest.

“Land is a source of wealth for its owners and when government acquires it, there must be a process in place for adequate compensation. If not, how do you expect such people to get out of poverty?” He asked.

Moving the motion under ‘Matter of Urgent Public Importance’ earlier, Hon. Kazeem Olayinka (Mushin Constituency 2), implored the House to organise a meeting with the stakeholders to address the problem.

In his contribution, Hon. Gbolahan Yishawu (Eti-Osa 2) stressed the importance of focusing on the enforcement of the law against land grabbing. He urged the establishment of a dedicated agency to effectively handle cases.

Other lawmakers who contributed to the debate harped on the need for stronger enforcement of the extant laws relating to land grabbing.

Meanwhile, the Lagos State House of Assembly has commiserated with the Olubadan-in-council over the demise of Oba Lekan Balogun, the 42nd Olubadan. The House also condoled the Nigerian Army over the killing of its personnel in Delta.

The lawmakers held a minute silence in honour of the departed while the Speaker directed the Clerk, Barr. Olalekan Onafeko, to send a condolence letter each to the Olubadan-in-council and the Nigerian Army.

Eromosele Ebhomele
Chief Press Secretary to the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly.

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