By Olasunkanmi Akoni
The Lagos State Government, through Taskforce on Environmental and Special Offences Unit, on Wednesday, issued a 7-day ‘Removal Notice’ to owners, occupants of illegal structures around government public schools at Mile 2, along Badagry Expressway and environs.
Other identified illegal structures include: Shanties, mechanic workshops, petty traders, containarised kiosks and commercial bus garages.
Chairman of the agency, Chief Superintendent of Police, DSP, Olayinka Egbeyemi, issued the ultimatum, during a meeting with affected owners, occupants and sectional heads of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, NURTW.
Egbeyemi warned the concern occupants to immediately vacate the entire area as well as the vicinity of the schools within the stipulated period or face demolition of the structures.
He affirmed that the ‘Removal Order’ became imperative following outcry by concerned residents, particularly ss regards a Public Schools, Imoye High School and Amuwo Odofin Junior Secondary School, where criminal elements were said to have turned the area into hideouts for carrying out their nefarious activities thereby making the environment unpleasant for learning.
According to him, “It was disheartening seeing these illegal business operators like mechanics, Iron benders, food, fruits vendors and others turning the entire perimeter fence of these schools into illegal trading spots.
“In addition they have littered the entire area with indiscriminate dumping of refuse and waste metal materials posing serious health hazards to residents.”
According to Egbeyemi, investigation conducted revealed also that those illegal structures/shanties which serves as abode to criminal elements who rob unsuspecting members of the public of their valuables along highways on Lagos- Badagry Expressway do not have any permit or operating license from the state government.
He reiterated that, immediately after the expiration of the ‘Removal Order’ on Tuesday, 4th of March, 2020, the Agency will embark on a clean-up exercise in the area as well as clampdown on all criminal elements.
Egbeyemi, however, cautioned traders and occupants not to attempt circumventing the removal order, by trying to bribe officials inorder to prevent or stop enforcement, stressing that Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu has, on compassionate ground, approved monetary compensation for those who deserve it.