Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, on Monday, warned that the state government will not tolerate lawlessness and the violation of the state’s building codes.
The governor also denied any political motives in the partial demolition of DATKEM Plaza, Ijebu-Ode.
Prince Abiodun formally reacted to the demolition and the attendant accusation after inspecting the 8-kilometre Mowe-Ofada Road, in Obafemi Owode Local Government Area of the state.
According to the governor, the partial demolition exercise carried out by the Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development was in line with the laws of the state.
He denied accusations in some quarters that the exercise was political, adding that necessary steps were taken by government officials when contraventions were observed in the course of constructing the edifice.
The governor noted that in Ogun State, and Nigeria, nobody is above the law. The law that governs ordinary citizens, according to him, also applies to the VIPs.
He said: “But for the fact you have ambushed me, I was not prepared to formally address that subject matter. And the reasons are very simple, we are a responsible government. We are responsible to our citizens. We are a law-abiding administration. I’m sure that everyone would testify to the fact that since I assumed office in 2019, I have ensured equity, fairness and upheld the rule of law. I have not in any way attempted to be vindictive or in any form or manner appear like someone who is trying to witch-hunt anyone.
“Having said that, because these are some of the insinuations I have read on social media and nothing could be farther from the truth. You all have seen the position of the Ministry of Physical Planning, which is the ministry that is entrusted with ensuring that people adhere to our different building codes. Because if we don’t respect building codes, if we don’t abide by building laws, it means that we are nothing but a chaotic society.
“These are the people charged with ensuring that our cities and towns are well laid out, well planned and the buildings that are constructed are safe to live in. We are all living witnesses to what has happened in the state and Lagos State when buildings have collapsed. And proactively, our government and across the country have brought some buildings down for violations of different building regulations.
“Only a few weeks ago, the new minister of the FCT said any person who builds in FCT without approval no matter how highly placed they are, be it a minister or anybody, the building will come down. And recalled sometime last year, when a building collapsed on Gerald in Lagos, a building that belonged to someone that I know personally, I held a press conference and said we would not allow for this to happen in Ogun State. You build without approval, you build beyond your approval, if you don’t build in line with our regulations, that building will come down