The senator representing Ekiti South, Mrs. Biodun Olujimi, has condemned the demolition of houses in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, by Governor Ayodele Fayose.
Mrs Olujimi, who is a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship aspirant, said physical development is a welcome development but should be done with a human face.
The Deputy Senate Minority Whip expressed misgivings yesterday in a statement by the Director General of her campaign organisation, Chief Bunmi Olugbade.
Although the senator hailed Fayose for initiating urban renewal, Mrs Olujimi said: “Any development that will cause the citizens tears and hardship will usually backfire and provoke negative reactions.”
The senator noted that the current demolition was ill-timed since it was happening when workers and pensioners were owed arrears of salaries and benefits, “Ekiti being a civil service state”.
Mrs. Olujimi said: “In advanced democracies, government will do enumeration and valuation of compensation to be paid to those who will be affected by such demolition, provide temporary accommodation for them and give them enough time to relocate before demolition.
“I want to appeal to those who are affected and I want to promise that the PDP government under my leadership will put smiles on the faces of the people rather than tears.
“Finally, I want to appeal to the people of Ekiti State to embrace PDP’s continuity agenda of ensuring that a PDP government is installed rather than a third-term agenda of an individual.”
On Wednesday, Fayose visited some families affected by the demolition in Ijoka area of Ado-Ekiti.
It was learnt that the governor said a compensation package was being worked out, but the affected house owners maintained that they wanted full compensation and not peanuts.
Many residents of the town, who have been displaced by the demolition, said they were forced to relocate to other places.
The beleaguered residents are relocating to places like Odo, Fagbohun, Ajebamidele, Oke Ureje, Emirin, Afao Road and Ilokun.
One of them, who spoke in confidence, said: “We have valid land documents, like building plan and survey plan, and we will need full compensation to build our houses elsewhere.