Christopher Oji, Lagos
The Lagos State Environmental and Special Offenses (Enforcement) Unit (Taskforce) over the weekend began the demolition of illegal structures, shanties, kiosks and containerised shops at Marwa Waterside, Lekki, Lagos
Speaking on the demolition, the Chairman of the Agency, CSP Olayinka Egbeyemi, said that the exercise became imperative in preparation for the construction of a coastal road which would serve as an alternative route for the Lekki-Epe Expressway and enhance free flow of traffic on that corridor.
According to Egbeyemi: “Illegal business operators like iron benders, mechanics, food/fruits vendors and others were served a seven-day ‘Removal Notice’ by the government to remove their property and vacate the entire area and the notice expired on Thursday.
“It was an eye-sore as illegal artisans, food vendors and others littered the entire area with refuse and waste materials. Investigation conducted revealed that none of the occupants and illegal business operators had any permit from the state government, and miscreants freely smoked and sold Indian hemp as well as engaged in prostitution around residential premises,” the official explained.
Egbeyemi further confirmed that after the expiration of the removal order, the government had given the illegal squatters an additional eight days of grace to vacate the entire area before embarking on the clean-up exercise, as well as a clampdown on all criminal elements disturbing law-abiding residents within Marwa Waterside and the entire Lekki axis.
He went on to implore illegal occupants of government lands and property to immediately vacate those areas, saying that it would not be business as usual across the state.