The Oyo State Government has unveiled plans to take over abandoned structures and properties that pose security threats and serve as hideouts for criminals in the state.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, the state’s Commissioner for Lands, Housing, Survey, and Urban Development, William Akin-Funmilayo, urged owners of such buildings to put them to use or face government intervention.
During an inspection of De Castle Inn on Queen Elizabeth II Road, Total Garden-Gate Road in Ibadan, the state capital, Akin-Funmilayo expressed concerns about the rampant use of abandoned buildings by miscreants and hoodlums. He emphasized that owners who fail to utilize their properties adequately would forfeit them to the state, which would then repurpose them for the benefit of all residents.
Akin-Funmilayo highlighted the immediate need to address the security threats posed by such buildings, citing instances of criminal activities and illicit drug trading. He emphasized the government’s commitment to ensuring the safety of residents and urged property owners to act swiftly to avoid forfeiture.
Earlier, Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde received an official report on the January 16, 2024 explosion at Old Bodija in Ibadan, where three ‘persons of interest’ were identified in connection with the incident. The report, presented at the Executive Chamber, Governor’s Office, Secretariat, Agodi, Ibadan, detailed the aftermath of the explosion, which resulted in casualties and property damage.
Special Adviser on Security to the Governor, Fatai Owoseni (retired CP), confirmed that the identified individuals would face prosecution based on the investigation’s findings. The government reiterated its commitment to upholding law and order, ensuring the safety of citizens, and holding perpetrators accountable for their actions.