Members of the Obalende Landlords Association, Lagos Island, South West Nigeria, have appealed to the governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babatunde Raji Fashola to renew the lease on their properties which has expired. They claimed that past leaders had sat on the matter and refused to renew it.

The landlords, whose ages range from 60 to 90 carried placards with the inscription like God Bless You Fashola, Please Renew Our Lease As Dividends Of Democracy. One Fashola, One Obalende and In You We Support. They sang solidarity songs at the Lagos State Secretariat, Alausa, Ikeja where they had converged.

Narrating their plight, the association’s chairman, Prince Soji Ladejobi said “we decided to bring to His Excellency the unfair demand and treatment of the people of Obalende in respect of the persistent refusal to renew the lease of our land and consequent refusal to approve our redevelopment building plans, despite repeated demands and even court ruling. Our fathers, grandfathers and great grandfathers were granted lease by the colonial government of Lagos State for 100 years, just as the present Land Use Act provides for 99 years and building lease has expired and the law is clear that such leases must be renewed albeit on new terms.

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Speaking on behalf of the governor on the matter, the Commissioner for Physical Planning, Sir Francisco Abosede said “Governor Fashola is ready and willing to renew but he wants the lease renewed to conform with the mega city status the Lagos State government is currently pursuing. I’m now appealing to everybody to be patient with the governor to put finishing touches to some grey areas in Physical Planning so that the renewal of the lease would be comfortable for everybody.

—Paul Iyoghojie