Residents petition Governor Abiodun accusing government officials of conniving with Chinese firm to grab community land

The residents of Ajegunle Araromi community in Makun, located in Sagamu local government area of Ogun State have petitioned Governor Dapo Abiodun, raising alarm about some staffers of the Directorate of Land Bureau allegedly  conniving with a Chinese businessman to grab some portions of land in the community.

Penpushing reports that the petitioners led by Chief Amos Adele made reference to their previous letter of protest dated February 20, 2022, as well as physical peaceful protest on the above issue, which till date did not bring any fruitful result.

The residents in the petition passionately begged the Governor to come to their aid had, stating that the alleged officials had pretentiously allocated several acres of land to the foreigners in the state and illegally encroaching the family inheritance.

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‘We were reliably informed that actions were taken by your Excellency through appropriate quarters to sanction and reprimand the perpetrators of the dastardly acts and their collaborators in the civil service of Ogun State. But your Excellency, it may surprise you to know that despite your order and our to disappointment and dismay that on the 8th of September, 2022, a combined team from the Bureau of Lands and survey under your office stormed the ancient town with a letter dated same day and titled ‘Illegal Occupation of Government Lands” with reference number LM/OW/VOL.1/5 placed on various buildings marked for demolition in the community’.

Penpushing further reports that the residents in the petition narrated their traumatic experience which they said occurred on June 27, 2023 when officials of Ogun State Physical Planning and Development Authority, accompanied by one Mr Felix, a Chinese businessman stormed their community with another notice, with reference number 0011689 with intention of forcefully taking over the family inheritance

‘Sadly, on many occasions we have watched with disbelief as the Chinese man who is offered protection by Hausa/Fulani soldiers TERRORISED our community and boldly say repeatedly that he has paid for our land and that we should go and meet our government for settlement and compensation and using bulldozer to clear everywhere and disturbing the peace of the peace-loving people purportedly on the instructions of the government’.

Penpushing also reports that the resident while lamenting over the the ugly development stated that to worsen their plight, they have also observed that the government’s body language seem aligned with the Chinese businessman position.

‘We understand that this Chinese businessman shenanigans, illegality and provocative action is been aided by government officials and greedy politicians in the corridor of power in Oke-Mosan. It has become glaring that their conscience has being bought with huge amount of hard currencies by the foreigner to the detriment of the villagers’.

‘It is both traumatic and instructive to note that the officials have thrown decency into the dustbin by selling a large portion of our community land reserved for the town hall and palace to the Chinese businessman in exchange for wealth. It is important to inform your Excellency that this wicked act has automatically deleted our community from the map of Ogun State. This is sad and ridiculous’.

‘It’s so unfortunate and sad that despite our peaceful conduct over the matter, we are surprised that the government that we all worked tirelessly to enthrone with our votes in 2019 and 2023 has left us to be trampled upon by a foreigner. Sir, our people are worried and disappointed that their rewards for being good citizens of the state is the illegal takeover of their land’.

‘We are quite aware that those who are involved in the lands bribery and racketeering saga in the government are behind this unwholesome act with their sole intention to negatively blackmail the government of your Excellency’.

‘After our previous meetings with the government officials on the site and Abeokuta office, during which a stay of further aggression was reached and land boarder lines deliberated,  the Chinese businessman has been threatening the lives of the community members and boasting around to pull down all the buildings and existing structures in the community’.

‘As we speak, he has already cleared a large land mass beyond the established boundaries in contrary to the parties resolution. Despite these glaring atrocities, the government has kept mute and seemingly looking the other way as the Chinese man continued to terrorise our people’.

‘At this point, it is pertinent to restate our total commitment and readiness to protect our family inheritance with the last drop of blood if the government fail to address this injustice and stay action on further destruction of our properties.

‘Your Excellency Sir, we all know you to be a man of justice and equity. We strongly believe that you will never allow those few greedy elements in the lands bureau, Ogun State Physical Planning and Development authority and Surveyor -General office to tarnish your hard earned image and reputation in the public sector’.

‘It has become clear that these people are abusing your simplicity and gentility to commit the criminal act  against the peace loving citizens by selling our ancestral home/ town to foreigner in a fraudulent manner that is aimed at setting the people against the government’.

‘It is very disheartening and sad that this Chinese businessman comes around with so much arrogance and say he has no business with the us. He has continued to insist and boast that we should channel our complaints and grievance to Ogun State Government’.

He even boastfully told the peaceful community members that he had paid so much that can settle all the inhabitants to the government in Abeokuta. We are therefore beginning to believe that the government is playing a smart game with our collective intelligence and peaceful conduct’.

‘It is becoming clear to us that there is a plan by government to rob us of our inheritance. Sir, Government exist because of the people. It is on this ground that we once again cry/plead with you to swiftly intervene in the matter to avoid any breakdown of law and order.

‘We also invite all the political leaders, State House of Assembly, National Assembly members, traditional rulers to wade into this matter before it gets out of hands. Lastly, as the custodian of authority and a listening Governor, we hereby passionately appeal to you and your government to conduct a full investigation into the matter surrounding the connivance of government officials and the Chinese businessman to forceful take over our community’.

‘We also crave your indulgence that you call for a round table meeting with all parties before the matter is escalated beyond control and for all parties involved to respect the existing court order with Suit *No HCS/148/2013* in which the Chinese company HAIRUN INTERNATIONAL LIMITED has been joined pending the determination of the suit and possible peaceful resolution of the dispute’.

‘Interestingly, it is ludicrous that even the roads linking the community with other communities in the area were sold. Above attached are the copy of the recent and previous abetment notices served and pasted on the buildings within the community for your perusal.  Please save Ajegunle Araromi from extinction. The people of Araromi Ajegunle are good citizen of Ogun state, we pay our dues/taxes accordingly and also performing our franchise as a good citizen’, the petition reads.

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