Lagos govt demolishes houses close to airport

The Lagos State Building Control Agency (LABCA) in conjunction with the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria has demolished some houses located in Ajao Estate and Shasha areas of the state. The properties were located close to the Murtala Muhammed Airport.

The General Manager of LASBCA, Gbolahan Oki, during a press briefing in Ikeja before the demolition exercise, noted that most of the property owners close to the airport lacked the necessary building permits from relevant agencies.

Oki said, “We have realised that property owners in the Ajao Estate and Shasha close to the MMA lack necessary building approval which is a basic requirement. They also lack planning permits. Secondly, they are building on a pipeline and this could cause fire incidents.

“We have served four notices to the occupants of these houses several times for them to come up with what they have. Some of them came with approval but we found out that they were fake approvals. Some came with different documents and after that, we served them the necessary permits to move on.

“All these property owners have been served by FAAN since 2016 and LASBCA gave the residents more than two months to relocate. Unfortunately, some of them even went ahead to cover the demolition marks on the houses with paint. Today we will embark on the demolition of about 13 houses.”

The General Manager, Business Development, FAAN, Hycienth Ngwu, stated that the land belongs to the authority but that the occupants illegally encroached on it since 2015.

He added, “I want to make it clear that that land belongs to FAAN and the land was acquired for the purpose of building an airport in Lagos, which is the MM2. Sometime in 2015, we noticed encroachments on the Ajao axis and the rule is that no building shall be made near the perimeter fence of the airport, but we see a violation of this there today.”

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Although many of the occupiers had approached different courts across the country to stop FAAN from carrying out the demolition since 2016, the exercise proceeded in Ajao Estate on Friday.

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