The Pastor of the Disciples Mission of Christ Church, Primate Ojo Ajiboge, has accused the new Commander of the Rapid Response Squad, Olayinka Egbeyemi, of ordering the demolition of his church and a building on Abiodun Sadiku Street, off Adealu Street, Dopemu, in the Agege area of Lagos State.
A police team led by one Inspector Odiaua Sunday and one Mr Okedele, on December 19, 2020, had demolished the building, which housed the church.
NEWSCASTARS.COM learnt that Ajiboge told PUNCH Metro, “The policemen stormed the area with eight carpenters and ordered them to remove the roof of the church, and before I knew what was happening, the carpenters alighted from the bus and started removing the doors and windows of the church as well as the landlady and other tenants’ apartments.
“As if the removal of the windows and doors was not enough, the carpenters climbed the roof of the church and removed all the iron sheets, entered into the church and ransacked everywhere and took away money kept in the church. They stole N6.5m proceeds from my farm.
“When I asked the team leader to show me the court order for the demolition, he said they had the orders of the RRS commander to demolish the church and other buildings in the compound; everyone in the church and the other building was ordered out with immediate effect without any court order.
“To our surprise, when we got to the Dopemu Police Station, the Divisional Police Officer only asked us to write our names and leave, only for him to rebuke Okedele for carrying out an illegal order. Till date, nothing has been done and all my efforts that the case should be investigated and the culprits charged have not yielded any result.”
The landlady of the demolished building, Grace Adeife, said, “There was a time when I was sick and I travelled to Ile-Ife to treat myself and when I came back, Mr Okedele and my husband’s younger brother asked me to send them my account details only for them to send N500,000 to me; it was later that I was told that the money was from the proceeds of the sale of the house that my husband and I built.
“I was seriously angry. Two weeks after I was given the money, I started seeing strange faces coming to inspect the building; those who came told me that they respected me and that I should move my things out of the house because the building had been sold and I told them that I could not leave the house that my husband and I built.”
When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Muyiwa Adejobi, said, “It’s not possible that the RRS commander will order the demolition or be in support of the demolition; it’s not within his purview as a commander; so, it’s out of it. We have been told that the man, who went for the demolition, had papers to carry out such an operation; based on preliminary investigation, the man has the right for demolition because he has papers from the Lagos State Government.
“However, the command has instructed the DPO of that area to get involved and conduct an investigation for us to know what went wrong. If the man does not have genuine papers, then we will know what to do and the command will refer them to the necessary government agencies, which are in charge. It is not the job of the police to order the demolition of a building; the police can only give cover to those who have papers to carry out demolition. We are going to look into it and see what went wrong and handle the matter objectively.”
Egbeyemi, while responding to a text sent to him by our correspondent, said, “Really? Do they serve in RRS? Blatant lies. You can give me their phone numbers to assist you in your findings as I have never come across such names.”