Dis­quiet as Lagos long­est-serv­ing law­maker is booted out of ‘res­i­dence’

The in­ter­nal squab­bles in the ranks of All Pro­gres­sives Congress (APC) in Lagos State may have man­i­fested in the re­cent ejec­tion of Hon. Funmi Te­ju­osho and her fam­ily from their “res­i­dence” at GRA Ikeja. Daily Trust on Sun­day re­ports that though the state

Sunday Trust - - INSIDE POLITICS - From Ab­dul­la­teef Aliyu, Lagos

Who is the right­ful owner of the prop­erty at 3A, Saseg­bon Street, GRA, Ikeja, Lagos? This is the poser which the evic­tion of Hon. Funmi Te­ju­osho from the res­i­dence has gen­er­ated. In a com­mando style, heav­ily armed mo­bile po­lice­men stormed the house about 11 am on Fri­day Novem­ber 3 to take over the build­ing while she was away in Lon­don on an of­fi­cial as­sign­ment. The law­maker’s fam­ily in­clud­ing her hus­band, Prince Kay­ode Te­ju­osho and four chil­dren were how­ever locked in­side as po­lice­men took over the ex­pan­sive build­ing.

Few days, the build­ing was handed over to the Deputy Speaker of the House of As­sem­bly, Hon. Wa­siu Eshin­lokun-Sanni as of­fi­cial quar­ters while the prop­er­ties of the for­mer oc­cu­piers were thrown out. Prior to the hand­ing over, a sign­post with the in­scrip­tion, “Of­fi­cial Quar­ters of Lagos Deputy Speaker” was mounted at the en­trance.

Te­ju­osho was al­lo­cated the of­fi­cial quar­ters when she was elected Deputy Speaker in 2007. She was im­peached from the po­si­tion in 2009 but con­tin­ued to oc­cupy the res­i­dence claim­ing to have bought it over dur­ing the mon­e­ti­za­tion era of the for­mer Pres­i­dent Oluse­gun Obasanjo.

But sources within the gov­ern­ment said the house is the of­fi­cial res­i­dence of the Deputy Speaker but the em­bat­tled law­maker al­legedly bought the house through her com­pany, in­sist­ing the house was bought il­le­gally.

One of the sources who spoke with Daily Trust on Sun­day said the gov­ern­ment re­cently set up a com­mit­tee on re­cov­ery of gov­ern­ment prop­er­ties that were sold il­le­gally with about 100 prop­er­ties in­clud­ing Te­ju­osho’s al­ready iden­ti­fied.

The source said, “When she left as Deputy Speaker, there is no mon­e­ti­za­tion pol­icy, how come the of­fi­cial res­i­dence of Deputy Speaker of Lagos State House of As­sem­bly sud­denly dis­ap­peared and then be­came the prop­erty of a com­pany that be­longs to an ex-Deputy Speaker that was im­peached?

But many ob­servers be­lieve there is more than meets the eyes to the evic­tion of the law­maker who is said to be close to Banire who is hav­ing a run­ning bat­tle with the state gov­ern­ment.

It is strongly be­lieved that the tra­vail of the law­maker is as a re­sult her close­ness to Banire who also hails from the same Mushin Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment with Te­ju­osho.

In fact, the law­maker’s hus­band, Prince Kay­ode Te­ju­osho who briefed news­men on the de­vel­op­ment in the ab­sence of his wife, de­scribed the ac­tion of the state gov­ern­ment as “sheer po­lit­i­cal per­se­cu­tion and un­com­mon vendetta.”

He in­sisted that the house was duly pur­chased by his wife through a com­pany where the fam­ily has a stake, adding that the sum of 150mil­lion was paid to the cof­fers of the gov­ern­ment to se­cure the Right of Oc­cu­pancy to the build­ing.

He said, “Let me quickly lay the facts bare to cor­rect the false­hood be­ing ped­dled by the Gov­ern­ment to jus­tify their un­law­ful act and out­right vi­o­la­tion of our rights. Dur­ing the ad­min­is­tra­tion of for­mer Gov­er­nor Bola Tin­ubu, the Lagos State Gov­ern­ment adopted prop­erty’s re­de­vel­op­ment sev­eral civil ser­vants of the its Fed­eral prop­er­ties mon­eti­sa­tion oc­cu­py­ing pol­icy Gov­ern­ment’s by to same of­fer­ing pub­lic/ and for sale re­de­vel­op­ment as well as schemes. com­pa­nies un­der

“This mon­e­ti­za­tion pol­icy was con­tin­ued by the Ba­batunde Raji Fashola gov­ern­ment, as a re­sult of which sev­eral of­fi­cials ben­e­fited, in­clud­ing the present chair­man of the Lagos chap­ter of the APC, Mr Henry Dele Ajo­male.

“In fur­ther­ance of this pol­icy, my wife and I be­ing the present oc­cu­piers were equally af­forded the same op­por­tu­nity of ac­quir­ing the prop­erty which we chose to do through a com­pany in which we have in­ter­est. This com­pany called De­bam Mega So­lu­tions Lim­ited, by a let­ter dated Novem­ber 21, 2008, ad­dressed to His Ex­cel­lency, the Gov­er­nor of Lagos State, De­bam Mega So­lu­tions Lim­ited sought the con­ces­sion and ap­proval of the Gov­er­nor to ac­quire the right of oc­cu­pancy over the prop­erty at 3A, Saseg­bon Street, GRA, Ikeja, Lagos,” he ex­plained.

Ac­cord­ing to him, “since the ac­qui­si­tion of the prop­erty, De­bam Mega So­lu­tions Lim­ited en­joyed quiet and undis­turbed pos­ses­sion of the prop­erty un­til about 11:00am on Fri­day, 3rd of Novem­ber, 2017, eight years af­ter, when po­lice­men from the of­fice of the Gov­er­nor of Lagos State, led by one Mr D. Abutu, with­out an or­der of court, in­vaded the prop­erty, evicted some of the oc­cu­pants and im­pris­oned the oth­ers, who have re­mained im­pris­oned since.”

Prince Te­ju­osho also pointed out that four deputy speak­ers be­fore Hon. Te­ju­osho did not oc­cupy the house.

But the state gov­ern­ment in a state­ment by the Com­mis­sioner for In­for­ma­tion and Strat­egy, Mr Steve Ay­orinde stated that: “That the mat­ter in ques­tion does not in­volve the gov­er­nor’s of­fice as be­ing er­ro­neously al­leged but a tussle of own­er­ship on a gov­ern­ment prop­erty be­tween an in­ter­loper and the Deputy Speaker of the Lagos State House of As­sem­bly.

“That while a cou­ple has stepped for­ward to claim own­er­ship of the said prop­erty, this is a mis­di­rected claim as the cou­ple did not make any pur­chase on the prop­erty. The com­pany that made the pur­ported pur­chase did so in er­ror and is yet to step for­ward to chal­lenge the can­cel­la­tion of the pur­chase since the com­pany - a cer­tain De­bam Mega So­lu­tions - which paid only a por­tion of the of­fer price never com­pleted pay­ments on it that would have en­ti­tled its full takeover and ac­cess to Cer­tifi­cate of Oc­cu­pancy.” The com­mis­sioner ex­plained that the in­com­plete pay­ment has since been re­funded to the com­pany and the prop­erty retrieved so that it can con­tinue to serve as the of­fi­cial quar­ters of the Deputy Speaker. Be­sides, Mr Ay­orinde stated that while gov­ern­ment ac­knowl­edges a form of mon­eti­sa­tion pol­icy that al­lowed cer­tain lev­els of gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials and po­lit­i­cal ap­pointees to pur­chase of­fi­cial quar­ters in their in­di­vid­ual ca­pac­ity on owner-oc­cu­pier ba­sis, this pol­icy never ex­tended to com­pa­nies like De­bam Maga So­lu­tion which is not a gov­ern­ment en­tity and could not have legally made a bid for a gov­ern­ment prop­erty. “That the names of the two di­rec­tors of the said com­pany are never Lagos State of­fi­cials and the me­dia is en­cour­aged to in­ves­ti­gate the names of those di­rec­tors with the Cor­po­rate Af­fairs Com­mis­sion whether the com­pany is owned by the Te­ju­oshos or not as claimed by the hus­band,” the com­mis­sioner noted. The Deputy Speaker who re­ceived keys to the house ex­plained that there was no ran­cour what­so­ever over the de­vel­op­ment.

here al­lo­cated that re­ported and Esin­lokun-Sanni to the af­ter the prop­erty to to Speaker the me the Clerk in place was 2015 and said: of not to we had the va­cant. dis­cover “I tried House came been to I set­tle We have things demon­strated am­i­ca­bly within ut­most us. ma­tu­rity, em­pa­thy and care in re­solv­ing all mat­ters re­gard­ing this prop­erty and this is the crys­talli­sa­tion of our col­lec­tive will and ef­forts. The Deputy Speaker of the Lagos State House of As­sem­bly can be said to now have a roof over his head.”

But the ques­tion is why did the state wait till af­ter these years to take over the house if it was sure the for­mer Deputy Speaker was il­le­gally oc­cu­py­ing the prop­erty? Pun­dits say it is part of the APC power play which has spilled over to the House of As­sem­bly.

The con­tro­ver­sial house

Hon. Funmi Te­ju­osho

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