The Eyin-Osa community in the Free Trade Zone Parcel B and its resettlement area named Resettlement of Eyin Osa witnessed a protest last week Thursday as indigenes and residents demonstrated against ACP Jejeloye of the Lagos Taskforce and LSSTF boss Dr Ayo Ogunsan. The protesters accused them of forcibly taking over Eyin-Osa land for a notorious landgrabber known as Murphy Adebare Ademoye, also known as Topaz Gardens.
The protest, held in front of the Lagos High Court, aimed to draw attention to the alleged forceful taking over of residents’ lands and the damaging of properties belonging to Harmony Gardens and Estate Development Limited, which were legitimately bought from the Eyin-Osa Resettlement Committee.
According to Mrs Apena Adijat, the Secretary to the Parapo of Abomiti, Yeguda & Eyin-Osa Displaced Communities, Murphy Adebare Ademoye has become a terror to the indigenes and residents of Eyin-Osa. Topaz allegedly employed the services of touts and the Lagos State Taskforce to intimidate, assault, and evict the staff of Harmony Gardens, resulting in the demolition of their properties. Topaz then erected his billboard on the land that belongs to Harmony Gardens to defraud innocent buyers. Mrs Adijat called upon the Lagos State Government to intervene and protect the rightful owners of the resettled land, as they possess legitimate Certificates of Occupancy for their respective zones.
The situation escalated when the Baale of Laporu, Eyin-Osa, Chief Waheed, stated that Murphy Adebare Ademoye and his thugs had no legitimate claim to the Eyin Osa land and were pure landgrabbers, engaged by Alhaji M. Shitu A.K.A I no go gree of Epe.
In response to the escalating conflict, the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Idowu Owohunwa, yesterday 13th June invited all parties involved in the land dispute to his office at the police command in Ikeja, Lagos for a hearing.
During the hearing, Topaz presented his case, asserting that he had purchased 100 acres of land in Eyin Osa from Alhaji Shittu, the President of Eyin Osa United Kingdom. However, upon attempting to take possession of the land, he claimed to have been attacked by hoodlums whom he believed were affiliated with Hon. Abdullahi Mosasoluwa A.K.A Mr Ibile and Alhaji Threeco, which Mr Ibile debunked.
Hon. Saheed Abdullahi Mosadoluwa, representing Harmony Gardens and Estate Development Limited, defended his position as an investor who had legitimately acquired land in Eyin Osa from the Eyin Osa Resettlement Committee. He presented the Eyin Osa Memorandum of Understanding and the Eyin Osa Certificate of Occupancy as evidence of his acquisition.
Alhaji Shittu, the President of Eyin Osa United Kingdom, claimed that the Lagos State Government had disclaimed any agreement with Topaz through a publication in 2021. He clarified that the Certificate of Occupancy had been issued to the Eyin Osa Resettlement Committee and he and his group did not conduct any enumeration. He expressed his grievance with the Lagos State Government rather than Hon. Dr. Abdullahi S. Mosadoluwa or the Eyin Osa Resettlement Committee.
High Chief Olatunde Oluwo, the recognized Chairman of the Eyin Osa Resettlement Committee, emphasized that the Lagos State Government had released the Certificate of Occupancy to the committee, which had conducted enumeration in collaboration with the government. He stated that Alhaji Shittu and his associates did not participate in the enumeration process and thus did not hold any legitimate claim within the Eyin Osa resettlement zone.
After carefully considering all parties involved and reviewing the submitted documents, the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Idowu Owohunwa, responded to the case. He stated that Eyin-Osa United Kingdom is not recognized by the Lagos State Government, making any land transactions conducted with this entity invalid. The Commissioner emphasized that the Eyin-Osa Resettlement Committee is the legitimate body representing the resettlement land, holding a valid Certificate of Occupancy issued by the government.
The Commissioner acknowledged that Alhaji Shittu and others who sold the land to Topaz had a genuine dispute with the Eyin-Osa Resettlement Committee and their assignees. These individuals had successfully perfected their land titles with the Lagos State Government. He further stated that Eyin-Osa United Kingdom’s grievance lies with the Lagos State Government, as they have not completed the necessary processes to perfect their title with the government.
The Commissioner advised all parties involved to seek an amicable settlement and explore the possibility of resolving the dispute through compromise. The plenary was adjourned for another two weeks to allow for a report on any progress made in reaching a settlement.
But, another investor from Whiterose claimed that the CP advice is like turning deaf ears to justice by asking the stakeholders to negotiate with the reknown landgrabber in person of Murphy Adebare when it is obvious that his action is criminal trespass, invasion and misleading of the law enforcement agencies.
It is hoped that the parties will heed the Commissioner’s advice and work towards a peaceful resolution of the land dispute in Eyin Osa, ensuring justice for the affected residents and safeguarding their rights.