‘They ate my smoked fish’ – Slumbreakers yell at the toll station in Lecchi
According to a report by TheCable, many residents of Foreshore, a slum near a toll station in Lecchi, were saddened Wednesday when officials from the Lagos environmental task force, accompanied by police, demolished and burned their makeshift homes. …
When TheCable visited the community on Thursday, residents were desperate.
The community is separated by an iron barricade and a gate that blocks out residents from line of sight to the Lecchi toll station, one of the October 2020 #EndSARS collection points and a scene where soldiers fired at unarmed protesters.
Before the demolition, more than 300 people were reported to have lived in temporary structures in the area, mostly made of wood and nylon siding, but the demolition has displaced many of them, who now sleep in unfinished buildings and so on. aerial bridges around the Lecca axis.
Some residents said they were unable to save their property during the demolition, claiming that officers from the Moroko police station set them on fire.
A resident, a mother of two, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told TheCable that task force officials and police did not allow residents to pack their property. However, he acknowledged that officials had already visited the community on Tuesday to take leave.
“They burned some of my sister’s belongings, her grades from elementary to college and our clothes,” she said sadly.
“I have nowhere to stay, but I have relatives with whom I can be. They brought the police and mopols on bulldozers.
The mother of four is among residents who believe the community was destroyed by hosting #EndSARS protesters as well as participating in protests.
He added in a pidgin: “Even this #EndSARS protest, we in this community do not join them, some of us are watching, we do not know why they are destroying our home because of the protest.”
Samaila, a young man from Adamawa State, is very upset about the situation. He was at work during a demolition exercise. When Cable approached him – sitting with his sister and four children who had surrendered to bags of clothes and mattresses – he looked disappointed.
As he spoke, he reached into his pocket and pulled out his standing ballot, shouting angrily, “I voted for this government, look at my PVC. I usually go to Olosan to vote in the sun and I don’t think we will be treated like animals. “
Samila said she was unaware of the 24-hour notice to leave the community, adding that she did not know where to go after the eviction as Lagos is not her home state.
“I was at work when they arrived. Before I returned, all my belongings were burned. We just manage here ourselves. The land owners know our situation, they know that we are staying here and how we behave here, ”he said.
“It was not the owner of the land who said that we should leave, it was our own government that said they did not want to see us, and we are citizens, and we are the ones who elected them.”
This was a different scenario for a middle-aged fish seller commonly referred to in the community as Iya Egun. He accused some officials of eating his smoked fish, even though he begged overly.
He said, “If you want to notify someone, a week or a month will do, not a day.”
Iya Egun told TheCable that she is a widow with six children and that thanks to the fishing business, she was able to sponsor one of the children at the university.
“This is the fish business that I do to please my children. Since yesterday I have been thinking what to do after this place was demolished. I didn’t even eat because I don’t know where to go, ”he said.
“When the officials arrived, I was smoking fish here (pointing to the demolished object), I told them to let me pack my belongings, that I would leave. They didn’t answer, they threw away part of my property, and some officers ate my fish. ”
Attempts to force the police to comment on the allegations of arson of residents’ belongings were in vain, as Muyiwa Adejobi, a spokesman for the Lagos police headquarters, did not answer his calls and did not respond to transmitted messages.