Thugs yesterday invaded the ongoing Federal Government Housing Scheme at Alagbaka, in Akure, Ondo State, shooting sporadically, harassing workers before demolishing the construction works.
THISDAY gathered that the hoodlums pounced on Medaville Estate, beating the workers to a pulp and destroyed properties worth millions of Naira for the umpteenth time.
Also, an on-the-spot assessment of the site showed that the hoodlums, who are not the usual land-grabbers, stormed the housing scheme for destructive motive rather than eking money from the owner of the estate.
Several buildings that were at lintel levels were pulled down, plumbing pipes were mutilated and more than five Storex tanks were mauled down. One of the workers was also beaten to a coma by the thugs.
Speaking to Journalists, the Managing Director, Medaville Building & Construction Co. Ltd, Otunba Ademola Akin-Benson, accused the Deji of Akure, Oba Aladelusi Aladetoyinbo, of sponsoring thugs to carry out the attack.
e alarm over alleged threat by the monarch on several occasions, lamented that the king has been making unlawful moves to grab the land from him and halt the federal government project.
According to him, Oba Aladetoyinbo has been using thugs to disrupt work at the site and sometimes drop charms to scare him and the workers. He lamented that over N50 million had been lost to the regular attacks.
He said the Deji and some of his chiefs, alongside herbalists and Ogboni Fraternity members, persistently placed fetish objects on the project site and chased away all engineers and other people working on the site.
He, however, disclosed that the spot where the Deji lays claim to as community land was a distance away and not the spot where work is going on in line with extant court judgment.
He said: “Several time Deji has come here to beat people; two weeks ago he sent his boys to kidnap some of our workers here. We reported it to the police and appropriate authorities. They were here on the 18th of this month with two bikes, beating and harassing the workers; destroying many building materials as well.”
He explained that the land belongs to the Federal Government but was ceded to Medaville Building & Construction Co. Ltd to develop, pointing to portions of the estate that is enmeshed in litigation with the monarch.
The Chairman noted that the matter had been reported to police severally, adding that “we are in court. My lawyers have filed Section 49 against him which he always run away.
“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, who disclosed that two different litigations have been instituted to check the monarch’s excesses, said he would not allow his to continue to disrupt the Federal Government project.
“We are doing this in order to ease housing problems in Ondo State. What they did this morning was a disturbance of the peace of the community.
“ It is a shame to a first class oba, the Chairman of Oba’s Council in Ondo State, it is a disgrace because I am from a royal family. I gave him all that this respect but we are going to pursue this case. The Federal Government is aware of the frequent harassment and destruction.”
Reacting, the Deji of Akure, Oba Aladelusi Aladetoyinbo, through his Chief Press Secretary, Michael Adeyeye said the palace is surprised by such unfounded allegation.
He said: “You know the Deji is a complete gentleman who believes strongly in dialogue and the rule of law. He is never a violent man and neither does he believe in such.
“It was Otunba Benson that went to hire thugs and his refusal to pay them their fee led to crisis and destruction witnessed at the site. He is only trying to point accusing fingers rather blame himself for the woes he brought upon himself.”
“Like you may be aware, there is a disputed five hectares of land which belongs to Akure, the court had asked him not to work on the disputed area but only on the approved 15 hectares. So we expect him to abide by the decision of the Court over the matter,” he added.
According to him, the palace has no hand in the in-fight that ensued between the thugs.
“Akure will never do anything that will disrupt it’s peace. We want development and expansion, we will not do anything to the contrary. The man in question should check himself and desist from this cheap blackmail. We urge him to see Akure as a peaceful land that is very accommodative,”, Oba Aladetoyinbo added.
Culled from THISDAY