By Godwin Otabono
The ongoing enmity between former Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Raji Fashola and his successor, Akinwumi Ambode has continued to worsen as the latter has reportedly revoked the allocation of over25 plots of land by his predecessor, towards the tail end of his tenure.
According to a report by TheCable, the vast land at Lekki Phase One had been allocated to the Lagos State Water Corporation in 1998 by the then military administrator of the state, Mohamed Marwa, while the certificate of occupancy was signed by Bola Tinubu, former governor of the state, in 2006.
However, Hakeem Muri-Okunola, who was the permanent secretary of the Lagos state ministry of lands under Fashola, had reportedly informed the former governor that the land was “available”.
The report claimed that the land was officially parcelled into 25plots and shared by Fashola who went on to sign the certificates of occupancy on May 26, three days to his exit from office.
The new allottees were curiously issued the old Cs of O, which had been phased out by Fashola and replaced with electronic certificates.
Most of the plots, it is alleged, were allocated to Fashola’s relatives, aides and associates — including Yewande Animashaun, his cousin who also served as his special adviser on public health, and Wale Ahmed, who served ashis commissioner for special duties.
Amazingly, a female newscaster with a Lagos-based TV station was one of the beneficiaries, TheCable learnt.
Meanwhile, the report further added that Muri-Okunola did not disclose the actual number of available plots to Fashola and was said to have kept several plots for himself, out of which three were allocated to Adeyemi Isiba, then general manager of New Towns Development Authority (NTDA), against government regulation.
Nobody is allowed to buy more than one plot in a government scheme but the three plots were registered in Isiba’s name.
He has now been removed as GM of NTDA following a series of findings on the activities of theagency under his watch.
Susbesequently, as soon the governor assumed office, officials of the water corporation wrote to him to complain that the land belongs to the agency and that the original C of O was still valid as it was not voided by Fashola before the reallocation.
This development is coming at a time the governor was being fingered to have approved over N78m for the designing of his personal website.