DEPORTATION OF IGBOS: Ex- Gov, Orji Kalu Accuses Lagos State Of Sealing Off His House
A former Governor of Abia State, Dr. Orji Kalu, has accused the Lagos State Government of sealing off his property in Park View Estate, Ikoyi.
Close aides of the ex-governor said the development was as a result of the criticism of Fashola by Kalu over the ‘deportation’ of 72 residents of Lagos, who are of South-East origin.
Governor Peter Obi of Anambra State had raised the alarm about two weeks ago on the deportation of the people. He said the people were dumped under the bridge in Onitsha, Anambra State, in the early hours of the day.
But the Lagos State Government denied the allegation, saying it relocated 45 destitute persons from the state back to their state of origin.
Kalu had told Fashola to apologise to the Igbo for the “deportation” and threatened to sue him if he failed to do so.
However, the former governor’s Special Adviser, Media, Emeka Obasi, said Lagos reacted to Kalu’s comment by sealing off his property.
He said, “It was done as a revenge for the criticism by Kalu, who is the Coordinator of Njiko Igbo, a group fighting the cause of the South-East.”
Obasi said the property had been there for many years and that sealing it off after just two weeks of Kalu’s criticism of Fashola was an indication that there was more to it.
Obasi pointed out that Kalu was not the only Igbo to have suffered such a fate in Lagos “after the wicked and ungodly act of deporting legitimate residents of Lagos State.”
He added, “Why is it that it is now that the property is being sealed off barely two weeks after my boss disagreed with Fashola’s action?
“We maintain our stand and this will not distract us from fighting for the people.The action of the Lagos State Government remains unconstitutional because every citizen of Nigeria has a right to live in any part of the country.
“Fashola should remember that the Igbo community constitutes about 35 per cent of registered voters in Lagos State and they should be treated with respect.”
However, a statement by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Media, Mr. Hakeem Bello, said, “The fact is that Mr. Orji Uzor Kalu’s property in Park View Estate, Ikoyi was distrained pursuant to Section 40 of the Revenue Administration Law of Lagos State for failure to pay the statutory annual land use charge despite three separate notices delivered to the said property.
“As a government driven by law and process, the Lagos State Government will ordinarily expect all law abiding residents to discharge their responsibilities to the state.
“If, in spite of failing to do so, Mr. Orji Uzor Kalu wants to give ethnic colouration to a routine performance of its duties by an agency of the government, he is free to do so.
“However, when the issue was brought to the attention of the governor on Tuesday evening, he directed the agency to unseal the property and that an additional 14-day grace period be given to Kalu to pay the said charge.”