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Governor Obaseki Supervises Demolition Of APC Chieftain’s Shopping Complex

Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State on Thursday supervised the demolition of a 150-store shopping complex owned by a chief­tain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief Osamede Adun.
There are speculations that Obaseki was irked by the restraining order which Adun got from a court on Tuesday after he was ad­monished to respect the building plan and demol­ish the part of the structure which entered the walkway made for pedestrians.
It was also gathered that the Ministry of Land and Survey had approved 30 stores while Adun built 150 stores with no parking space provided for patrons and potential operators of the shops.
The property, which is at the heart of Benin City, the state capital is feared may cause shoppers and shop owners to park by the road­side and cause congestion on the roads.
In a statement issued by the Acting Chief Press Sec­retary to the Governor, Mr. John Mayaki, he said that the structure breached all-known town planning laws.
He said: “The struc­ture, for which the owner sought the government’s approval, was at variance with what was erected. In other words, the structure which was built was in contravention of what was approved.
“Before the demolition, notices were served, which have since expired. And, as you may be aware, nobody is above the law, neither is anyone’s interest bigger than the public’s interest.
“The plan, for which the owner sought approval, provided for 30 shops with adequate allowances for space and internal stair­cases, but what Edo peo­ple later discovered was a structure with 150 shops and external staircases, just as there was no provi­sion for parking,” Mayaki said.
Reacting to the develop­ment, Adun told journal­ists in Benin City that he bought the land genuinely and got approval from the Ministry of Land and Sur­vey.
According to him, “I genuinely applied to the government and they ap­proved my application before I embarked on the building of the stores.
“I am baffled that they went to pull down the building 12 mid night. My son wanted to try and re­move some of the proper­ties that were inside the house, worth millions of naira, but he was arrested and is still in detention,” he said.
Meanwhile, some trad­ers numbering over 200 said that they already paid over N250,000 each as rent for the uncompleted shops. They appealed to the state government to assist them recoup their money.

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