There’s ongoing palpable tension at Government.estate behind Ondo State Printing Press, Alagbaka, Akure as government workers resident in the estate threatened a showdown with cabinet members of Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu-led administration over life-threatening disruption of the original planning of the estate.
The workers, under the auspices of Alagbaka Community Staff Quarters, Akure, in a petition dated March 21, 2023, and addressed to the Head of Service for onward transmission to Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, raised the alarm that a building under construction within the Government Staff Quarters posed serious threat to lives of residents, particularly children, in the estate as the owner flouted the town planning rules.
A visit to the construction site on Saturday by our correspondemt revealed that the structure was allegedly owned by the state Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Charles Titiloye.
The structure, a storey building, which is at about 70 percent completion, was erected on the setback of the staff quarters.
He extended his perimeter fence by 20 meters beyond the plot allotted to him thereby making it impossible for oncoming vehicles to see anyone crossing the street.
Children crossing at the point to fetch water from a well in the Ministry of Environment Flower Garden, which is on the other side of street, are prone to being knocked down by vehicles anytime.
One of the residents of a two-flat building behind the structure has now been deprived of her parking space as the Attorney General’s fence has cut off the space and blocked the water track of the building.
The workers were forced to petition the governor after several attempts to prevail on the Attorney General to restrict his perimeter fencing on the plot allotted to him failed.
The petition entitled: “Encroachment on Government Land/ Obstruction of Easy Vehicular Movement At Alagbaka Quarters,” reads inter alia: “We the occupants of Alagbaka Quarters around Board for Adult, Technical and Vocational Education wish to report a building construction going on in the area and the owner of the building has encroached government land. This has made it difficult for easy vehicular movement which could cause accident in the vicinity.
“The road adjacent Ministry of Environment Flower Garden towards Board of Adult, Technical and Vocational Education.
“We use this medium to call on your attention to this life-threatening act and we urge you to use your good office to address this situation before it claims lives of residents of the quarters.”
Meanwhile, the first executive governor of the state, the late Pa Adekunle Ajasin had between 1979 and 1983 constructed some housing estates for staff of the state government at Alagbaka and Ala Quarters Iin Akure, besides the residential quarters for legislators.
Attempts had since been made by political officeholders in subsequent administrations to sell off the estates and the setbacks therein to themselves.
For instance, during the Governor Olusegun Mimiko-led administration, there were attempts by some political officeholders to partition the estates and sell to themselves, particularly the setback behind The DOME, but the governor instantly rebuffed the moves, saying government could decide to use the setback for something else in future.
But unfortunately, Governor Akeredolu has shared the said land and setbacks in Alagbaka and Ala Quarters among his appointees without recourse to the original plan drawn by the state Ministry of Physical Planning.
Besides the setback at The DOME, on which several key appointees in his administration had erected different multi-million naria mansions, the latest is the Attorney General’s encroachment of the staff quarters which is designed for bungalows.
The quarters were designed without perimeter fencing, but the Commissioner for Justice has flouted all rules and regulations guiding the quarters as he built a storey structure with high perimeter fencing.
Nevertheless, copies of the petition were served Permanent Secretaries of Ministry of Physical Planning, Ministry of Lands & Housing and the Ministry of Justice as the workers are desperately seeking justice.
Source: Independent Newspaper