Sunday, April 17, 2016 4:30 pm
Oko-Baba sawmillers have dissociated themselves from a purported suit against the Lagos State Government over plan to relocate them to Agbowa area of Lagos, Southwest Nigeria.
The sawmilliers, under the aegis of Lagos Mainland Sawmillers Association threw their weights behind the relocation plans of the Lagos State Government, saying it was high time all stakeholders supported the initiative to stop the distortion of the state built environment.
President, Lagos Mainland Sawmillers Association, Alhaji Ganiyu Onikeku at a press conference in Ikeja, Lagos at the weekend dissociated his members from the ongoing litigation instituted against the Lagos State Government by aggrieved stakeholders.
“The relocation would have happened during the administration of ex-governor Alhaji Lateef Jakande but he was unable to achieve it before his administration was toppled. The relocation resurfaced during the administration of former governor, Bola Tinubu. We were about to relocate to Ejirin axis to commence business but the location was not suitable for our business.
“For one of the reasons was that the water in that axis was too deep for our business. After several discussions, the stakeholders and Tinubu decided to search for another location in the state. From our search, we discovered Agbowa. We informed the governor of our findings and he directed that the work commence immediately.
“It was the former governor of the state, Mr. Babatunde Fashola that started the work in conjunction with the stakeholders. We accepted the plan brought by the ministry after condemning several plans brought forward.
“In December last year, Fashola wanted to commission the project but I refused because the work had not been completed. And When Governor Akinwunmi Ambode assumed office; he took the baton from where Fashola stopped,” he explained.
Onikeku said nothing was done in the absence of the stakeholders, saying they were all carried along in the relocation plans. According to him, since the government had not demolished the Oko-Baba sawmill, the suit was baseless, saying that the government was committed to the realization of the project.
“In fact, we often hold stakeholders meeting at the new site. Even last Monday, we were at the location. Those who are here are the committed sawmillers who often visit Agbowa. And they are satisfied with the level of the project.