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300 illegal structures, 5 plazas demolished in Onitsha

Over 300 illegal structures and five plazas built as shops were on Monday demolished by the Anambra state government in Onitsha South LGA.  The illegal…

Over 300 illegal structures and five plazas built as shops were on Monday demolished by the Anambra state government in Onitsha South LGA.

 The illegal structures were said to have been built by traders who allegedly got the approval of the National Inland Water Ways, NIWA, the organization Gov Charles Soludo said does not have the right to build or allocate spaces to traders.

 Governor Soludo had during the inspection of roads constructed by his administration ordered the Onitsha council chairman, Chief Emeka Joseph Orji, to demolish all the illegal structures, noting that the land belongs to Anambra State and not NIWA.

 “The code or bye-laws establishing NIWA gave the organisation 100 metres from the banks of the River Niger as the right of easement but what we are seeing here are illegal structures and should be demolished,” he said.

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 This development is coming as the state government has declared war on illegal structures following the collapse of a five-storey building at Fegge in the same council area.

 While the demolition was ongoing, the Hausa community in the area led by the Secretary of the Hausa Community in Onitsha South LGA, Alhaji Ishawu Imam, whose father is the Sariki of the Hausa community, expressed appreciation that the council chairman gave them time like other residents to remove their property.

According to him, the Hausa community in Onitsha South is happy with the developmental status of Soludo’s administration, pledging to continue to support him.

The Chairman of Onitsha South LGA, Chief Emeka Joseph Orji, who was at the site to supervise the demolition, said that when he was sworn in as council chairman last year, he issued notice to them to move out.

 According to him, the notice was followed by a series of follow-up notices but they disobeyed.

“Then last week, Mr Governor came here and told them that this place is not for shops or markets and ordered me to demolish the area but I gave them another one-week notice, which ended today,” he said.

The area, according to Orji, would be barricaded and cleared for the establishment of a Sea Side Resort, which would have green park areas with umbrella trees for relaxation and amusement.

Reacting to the collapsed five-storey building in the area, Orji announced that most buildings currently under construction would be subjected to an integrity test, which includes material and quality tests.

“Everywhere cannot be market in Onitsha and we have declared war on illegal structures and we shall ensure that the right thing is done about building collapse in Onitsha South LGA,” he said.


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