Traders in one of the main Festac markets, Agboju market, Monday, protested what they called an “illegal demolition order” of the market. A few of the traders, who spoke to The Guardian, accused the local government of being behind the order, which came without any prior notice.
The Guardian learnt that the order to pull down the market was connected to the disputed ownership of the land on which the market was built. “The dispute has been on for many years,” a trader said.
The ownership tussle is between one Alhaji Taiwo Abatan and Mrs Osenat Adebayo, the iyaloja (market leader) of the market, who sources said enjoys the support of the Local government.
Abatan claimed to be the rightful owner of the land and that he had papers of allocation from the Federal Ministry of Works, Power and Housing.
A Federal Ministry of Works and Housing official told The Guardian that he came into Lagos from Abuja this morning because of the land and also backed Abatan’s claims. A market leader, identified as Mama Tolu, who confronted the demolition team, said Adebayo illegally hijacked the market from Abatan.