By Tayo ABIOLA
The Lagos State Government on Sunday clarified that those circulating the fake news that the state government was demolishing Computer Village were opportunistic ethnic chauvinists who would always relish in vacuous propaganda that could fuel their fiendish mission.
A statement issued by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Gbenga Omotoso said that the Police Officers Wives Association (POWA) complex at the Computer Village, Ikeja, Lagos was ordered demolished by POWA itself.
In his words: “Lagos State Government has nothing to do with the demolition at Computer Village in Ikeja. The structure is owned by the Police Officers Wives Association (POWA), which ordered its demolition.
“Those circulating the fake news that Lagos State Government is demolishing Computer Village are opportunistic ethnic chauvinists who will always relish in vacuous propaganda that can fuel their fiendish mission; they will always fail in dividing Lagosians.”
Recall, the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) spokesperson, ACP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, Saturday night in a statement, clarified.
Traders at the complex have been protesting against the planned demolition.
On Friday, Commercial activities at the Complex were paralysed following the running protest by traders over the demolition plan.
Shops and stores were opened for business on Thursday while the protest lasted, but all the gates leading to the complex were locked on Friday.
The traders, led by the leadership of the complex, displayed a banner showing the court injunction they secured to prevent the demolition of the complex.
Adejobi, however, said it had become imperative to properly establish that the complex, a property of POWA, which was officially allocated to wives of Police Officers and their relatives, has been scheduled for demolition.
According to him, the demolition was to enable the Force to commence immediate construction of a modern shopping complex on the same land.
“The decision to demolish and reconstruct is predicated on the fact that professional opinion indicated that the structure as it is, constitutes a looming environmental hazard, as the site is prone to flood and may collapse.
“There is also the need for immediate landscaping and reconstruction. The planned demolition and reconstruction will be in phases and are in good faith for the best interest of all concerned.
“All necessary legal requirements have been duly met. The current occupants of the complex have been given more than notice of the demolition to enable them to evacuate from the facility in good time.
“Necessary steps have been taken to temporarily accommodate them within the same complex, while the reconstruction lasts.
“Equally, the relevant Lagos State Government agency, according to its expert advice, has been approached, required help sought, and necessary approvals for demolition obtained,” he explained.
Adejobi further said that while the demolition will proceed as planned, Nigerians were urged to disregard frivolous and unsubstantiated claims as well as media blackmail alleging wrongdoing and illegality on the part of the Force or the POWA.
He pointed out that the Police and their affiliates, like the POWA, will always be committed to better welfare and standard of living for its personnel and their families.