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Hotel owner takes own life after demolition in Anambra

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Hotel owner takes own life after demolition in Anambra

Story from Uji A.ILIYASU

Members of the Divine Heaven Amalgamated Landlords Association, Ifite-Nteje in Oyi local government area

of Anambra State, on Saturday, protested the demolition of their property by suspected youths of the community.

One of the owners of the demolished hotel, Malachy Chukwu, was said to have taken his own life over the incident.

The protesters, comprising men and women, said several buildings, including a hotel located at the Chinua Achebe Airport Road, Ifite-Nteje, worth billions of naira were allegedly destroyed by a group parading themselves as the executive members of Ifite-Nteje Development Union.

Chairman of the association, Chief Patrick Maduegbuna, appealed for Governor Chukwuma Soludo’s intervention to avoid total breakdown of law and order.

“The transaction took place in 2019 and the association started developing the place after payment.

“But all of a sudden, they started demolishing our property there, saying the land deal had been revoked. They demolished houses, hotel and other buildings nearing completion.

“We called them to know what was the matter, they said we did not buy the land correctly, that we should buy it again and add money.

READ ALSO: Kogi targets houses, hotels used by internet fraudsters for demolition

“We chose to protest rather than taking laws into our hands. There are more than seven estates there. All we want is to have our property back,” he said.

The association’s secretary, Mr Nwako Maduka, said the landlords paid all the required dues and the documents signed by the same people allegedly trying to revoke the land sold to them genuinely.

Chairman, Ifite-Nteje land management committee, Chief Ikechukwu Erikeife, said some young men who sold their plots were making efforts to sell the same land for the second time, adding that land grabbing to make money at all cost was the source of confusion in Ifite-Nteje.

He further said that the parcels of land were acquired by the developers through the right source, promising to look into the situation as the protesters could not afford to buy the land for the second time.

But secretary of ifite-Nteje land management committee, Mr Ngoesina Okechukwu, described those behind the allegations as meddlesome interlopers, saying Ifite-Nteje community has a way of hoisting leadership in a traditional way.

Okechukwu, a lawyer, said the estate developers followed due process in the acquisition of the land from Ifite-Nteje.
“I was in Abuja and heard about the protest organised by the opposition, who were claiming to be executive members of Ifite-Nteje Development Union.

“The same group was said to have claimed they had abolished the Ifite-Nteje land management committee and revoked the land sold to the landlords association.

“The Ifite-Nteje land management committee is a body constituted by the community with power of attorney which could sue and be sued.

“The court had taken judicial notice of the land committee as representative of Ifite-Nteje, in so many cases, securing judgement for the entire Nteje community,” he explained.

Reports show that about 70 associations acquired the vast land occupying strategic position along the airport road with most of the buildings destroyed were at various stages of completion.

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