BY Olasunkanmi Akoni
ABEOKUTA—OgunState Government Tuesday denied alleged demolition of $6.5 billion asphalt plant purportedly built by Bi-Courtney Highway Services Limited along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, describing the allegation as a total falsehood and a campaign of calumny.
The state Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Mr. Olamilekan Adegbite said this at the asphalt plant yesterday, stating that the state government only gave provisional approval to Bi-Courtney to use the land.
Speaking with journalists, Adegbite said the state government had not allocated the disputed land to Bi-Courtney, explaining that the construction firm did not meet the conditions stipulated in a letter written to it by Ogun State Bureau of Lands including the payment of a total sum of N75 million among others.
He said: “The plant was abandoned by the Reynolds Construction Company, RCC. When RCC was repairing the road, it was the site the construction firm was using. Since the concessionaire has taken over, RCC moved out. This place has been abandoned.
“We moved in our team there last Thursday to clear the ground so that we could start the trailer park in earnest. On that day, the team was chased away. Some police officers were on the site. They reported back that Bi-Courtney came to the site and said they own the land.
“We went to investigate in our land records. I found out that Bi-Courtney had written two letters to the government on the land. The first letter they asked to continue the RCC lease for the 8 hectares. Possibly on the advice of the former government, they wrote a second letter. The second letter was asking for the actual allocation of the land to them and that the land should be allocated to them for use.