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Realignment of Lagos-Calabar highway sparks outrage after demolitions



Outrage has trailed the federal government’s decision to reroute the multibillion Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway project after demolitions of multibillion property, Daily Trust Saturday reports.

The Minister of Works, Dave Umahi, who disclosed this on Thursday at the 3rd stakeholders’ meeting in Lagos, said the proposed diversion would no longer occur due to the submarine cables along the coastline.

He spoke while addressing stakeholders on compensation and environmental impact assessment on the coastal road project, particularly the Okun-Ajah community in Lagos.

Earlier, the Okun-Ajah community had cried out and warned the federal and Lagos State Governments over the alleged illegal variation to the Lagos-Calabar coastal highway route which put six villages at the risk of demolition and also the displacement of three traditional kings within the community if the plan was not shelved.


Our correspondent reports that previous demolitions carried out affected the beachfront of private businesses, including LandMark beach.

The Landmark Resort and Beach, the sprawling hospitality and leisure beach, an investment of $200 million, according to the owner, was the worst hit as the federal government bulldozed properties on the right of way.

Other beaches affected were Mami Chula Beach, Breeze Beach Club, Moist Beach and G12 Oniru Beach.

Apart from businesses that have been impacted, many ancestral homes along the coastal line are crying out over impending extinction.

Umahi while addressing stakeholders said, “If we go by the new alignment, 490 houses would be demolished; also, following the gazette alignment, 750 houses would be demolished.


“There is no change of alignment; we are following the gazetted alignment. There would, however, be realignment at Okun Ajah area of the state by 25 kilometres to avoid damaging submarine cables.”

Umahi disclosed that President Bola Tinubu had been invited to flag off the Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway.

The FG’s announcement sparked anger and outrage especially on social media over the rerouting of the controversial project.

Odogwu Anioma (@jidifeanyi) said “In sane clime, the minister would have resigned after demolishing businesses he ought not to because he didn’t do due diligence.”

Oluwasoromidayo (@SOromi) tweeted that “Until we have a system to which governance in Nigeria is held accountable, we will always repeat the same process and expect a different outcome MADNESS.”


On his part, Adewale ‘Damilare said “It’s sad that a supposed engineer who parades himself as works minister couldn’t run a check on the routes before demolishing people’s striving businesses. 

“We are bereaved of reasonable leaders as a nation!”

In a statement posted on its X handle, the Landmark Africa (@landmarkafrica) described the demolition as devastating.

“We are focused on working with the government to receive adequate compensation required to jumpstart the rest of the once thriving landside part of the Landmark Ecosystem and a new family centric beach in a different waterfront location.



Source link: Daily Trust/

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