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LAGOS: Taskforce demolishes illegal mechanic villages

THE State Environmental and Special Offenses Unit (Taskforce) has demolished two illegal mechanic villages and evicted  its occupants.

The villages which were located at Festac, opposite Area E Police Station and Maroko  powerlines under high tension cables were cleared as part of the state government’s commitment to safeguard the lives of its citizenry and beautify the state.   

The clearing up exercise which took place simultaneously today’s morning was supervised by the Chairman of the Agency, CSP Shola Jejeloye, who disclosed that series of warnings and notices were served to the illegal occupants of both locations but they were adamant to relocate, hence the need for the agency to take the drastic  measure to save the state from environmental degradation.

The chairman stated that the exercise was necessary to further help beautify the state and also reduce the habitat of street urchins and hoodlums who usually make use of such locations as a safe haven after perpetrating crimes and nefarious activities in town.

“Countless warnings have been served to operators of the illegal mechanic villages which were atimes being used as hideout or shield for criminal elements on different occasions, but with this new development criminality would be reduced to the bearest minimum” Jejeloye noted.

Accordingly, any human activities under the high tension cables is suicidal, and no responsible government will watch her citizenry die an avoidable and careless death without taking a precautionary measure to stop. 

The Maroko powelines which was also cleared up by the agency was marked by the state government for beautification project which will further translate the T.H.E.M.E.S. Agenda of Mr Governor to achieve zero tolerance to environmental degradation  in the state.

Jejeloye highlighted the need for such actions due to the incessant environmentally challenging activities carried out by the occupants who deficate openly and burn refuse indiscriminately.

“Residents complain regularly about the constant burning of refuse and tyres by the illegal occupants. Actions like these are hazardous to one’s health and also harmful to the environment. It will no longer be tolerated once this exercise is concluded,” Jejeloye stated.

Jejeloye assured that the state government would move into these locations immediately to begin the developmental action plans which the sites were originally mapped our for.

He promised Lagosians that shanties and Illegally occupied land in the state will no longer be a hiding place for criminal elements as they will be taken by the state government in due time.  Consequently, the Chairman of the Agency, CSP Shola Jejeloye had initiated serious discussions with relevant government agencies in ensuring allocation of large expanse of land for mechanic villages in all the nook and crannies of the state, particularly around Ibeju-Lekki axis to discourage haphazard and illegal development of mechanic villages in the state.

In a related development, officials of the state taskforce have arrested a motorcyclist for assaulting a personnel attached to the agency. 

The Suspect, one Peter Iorsashe was arrested on Thursday afternoon while plying the restricted route along Apapa-Oshodi expressway, but when accosted by the men of the agency, he resorted to violence. 

Speaking on the incident, Jejeloye stated that no form of intimidation against his men carrying out their legitimate duty will be entertained in any form.

He said the suspect who was arrested for assaulting the officer will be charged to court for assault.

“I hope this will serve as a deterrent to others who are nursing the idea of resisting arrest or resorting to violence even after being found wanting. We will carry on with our job diligently and no form of resistance from recalcitrant offenders, especially Okada men will be accepted,” Jejeloye said.

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