By Tony Nwanne
The Royal Family of Elegushi has concluded plans to take possession of the land in Otodo Gbame slum community in Ikate, Eti Osa Local Government Area of Lagos State, as a result of persistent violence among the residents.
The family said in a statement that they were left with no choice than to execute the court ruling ordering it take possession of the land in dispute and make use of it.
The statement signed by Muritala Elegushi, the royal family’s secretary, maintained that the decision was as a result of the abuse of rights of the lease earlier granted the residents of the community, saying the slum now constitutes both security and health threats to the neighbouring settlements and the entire Lagos State.
According to Elegushi, the recent violence that broke out in the slum community, which led to loss of lives and property, was a product of an internal wrangling among the residents and that it has nothing to do with neither the family nor the government.
While condemning the development, he said the family had granted the occupiers the opportunity to inhabit the place due to their fishing business, but that the opportunity has been abused ‘as they now lay claim to the land and pledge their loyalty to Badagry without any historical facts to back their claims.”
The statement reads in part: “The Elegushi royal family is unarguably the legal owner of the land which some of the current occupiers can testify to. The family obtained court rulings to take possession of the land from both magistrate and Lagos State high court in October and November, 2016 respectively.”
Elegushi called on various human rights group and international organisations to desist from supporting lawlessness, abuse of privileges and false claims by those he described as interlopers.