Wednesday, June 9, 2010


The political architectonic design created by the British under Lord Fredrick Lugard as Colony and Protectorate of Nigeria , a mere geographic expression in 1914 is still in the struggle to build a national united country after 50 years of the Independence obtained in October 1, 1960.
The journey to nationhood is a long one actually starting about 1887 as various Emirates, Obalands, Kingships, empires, were merged till 1900 when they became the Southern and the Northern Protectorates respectively.
Lord Lugard established the system of Indirect Rule by which local instrument of traditional rulers were converted into colonial agency through which the British, in the person of the Governor resident in the Colony, ruled in the name of the British Majesty.
With the merging of the powerful Sokoto based Empire to the Northern Protectorate in 1903 and the commercial Colony of Lagos to the Southern Protectorate in 1906, the foundation of the present Nigeria had been laid.
The success of Governor Lord Lugard prompted the merger of the two Protectorates which was embarked upon for budgetary and administrative convenience.
Lord Lugard’s administration was paternalistic in nature and it was not until 1922 that Governor Clifford gave succor to the yearning of the people for participation in the governance of their affairs by establishing a legislative council of elected indigenes into the political system in Lagos.
The Council consisted of 30 official members, 15 unofficial members appointed by the colonial government with 3 unofficial members representing the municipal areas of Lagos and Calabar. It included a limited number of elected members and African members selected to represent the interest of those parts of the colony not represented by elected members. The membership of this Council was however limited to males who were British subjects or natives of the Protectorate with 12 months residential qualification with an income of not less than 100 pounds a year. With the first election held in September 1923, the Council was inaugurated in October. The Clifford Constitution introduced elective principle and stimulus to the formation of a political party – the National Nigerian Democratic Party (NNDP) led by Herbert Macaulay in 1923, a party that dominated the 3 elective seats in Lagos.
The activities of the NNDP for many years were limited to Lagos as the activities of the party were geared towards filling up the seats of the Legislative Council. The need for an enlarged politicization nation wide gave birth to the formation of the Lagos Youth Movement for the purpose of sensitizing the public to embark on the political activities that would demand for more participatory functions for the indigenes in the governance of their territory in 1934 .The champions of this formation were H. O. Davies, Dr. J.C. Vaughan, Dr. Kofo Abayomi, Ernest Ikoli, Dr.Nnamdi Azikiwe and Obafemi Awolowo. In 1939 it transformed into the Nigerian Youth Movement.
The NNDP was perceived by its critics as not aggressive enough since Herbert Macaulay only criticized isolated measures rather than the totality of colonial regime. His call for a Nigerian independence within a British Commonwealth was not attractive to the new nationalist. The National Youth Movement (NYM) then challenged Herbert Macaulay’s NNDP electorally and won the three seats in Lagos in 1938.
The British did not look kindly to the N YM which it dismissed as a Southern Movement despite the inclusion of prominent Northerners among their activists and thereby resulting into disaffection of the northern Emirs.
But the National Youth Movement was to fall prey to its own internal strife on the issue of leadership tussle between Prince Akinsanya who later became an Oba, the Odemo of Ishara and Ernest Okoli .Chief Obafemi Awolowo on principle supported the candidature of Ernest Ikoli as President on the death of the President as the constitution of the movement stipulated since Ikoli was the Vice President. But Dr. Azikiwe supported Prince Akinsanya and accused Chief Awolowo of tribalism for supporting Ikoli who is not a Yoruba man against his own Remo kin for which Chief Azikiwe withdrew from the movement leading to the withdrawal of all Ibo members.
By 1939, the Southern provinces were divided into two territories called the Western and Eastern provinces respectively as the North stood firmly united, a factor that was to give the Northern Protectorate the sense of oneness against the split south.
With the spread of nationalist consciousness, the National Council of Nigeria and Cameroon was formed with Engineer Herbert Macaulay as leader to tap the national flavor of nationalism in the territory in 1944.
By 1946 Governor Arthur Richards promulgated a constitution with a Central Legislative Council headed by a President. The council was composed by 16 officials and 18 unofficial members and the unofficial members were to be elected by the Regional Legislatures which was merely a deliberative assembly that would not legislate but would merely make recommendations to be considered by the Central Legislative Council.
As the Second World War was taking its toil, the nationalists find reasons to demand for higher participation and the need for self rule as their citizens went to war in foreign countries.
This brought about the period of diarchy by which the colonial power now accommodated the participation of the indigenes in the governance of their land resulting into the collapse of the Arthur Richard’s constitution yielding place to Governor Macpherson’s constitution in 1951. The Ibadan Conference that preceded this development considered the issues of federalism vis-à-vis confederalism. Would the new nation be a loose centre with strong regions or otherwise?
The 1951 Macpherson constitution was a compromise between confederalism and unitarism giving birth to federalism as advocate by Chief Obafemi Awolowo, a middle way between Ahmadu Bello’s confederalist stance and Nnamdi Azikiwe’s Unitarianism. The fact that made this reporter to suggest to Chief Awolowo in a documentary ‘The Man Awo ’in 1979 that he was the father of Nigerian federalism and he humbly agreed.
But agreeing on federalism was not an easy compromise as the leaders were not in agreement as to when to get independence for the nation. To compound the issue, the new Constitution resulted into the ethnicization of the political parties that aspired to capture power at the regional level. The NCNC now led BY Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe after the death of Engineer Macaulay tilted towards Ibo domination, the Action Group led by Chief Obafemi Awolowo, predominantly Yoruba , the NPC could not even disguise its garment as Northern Peoples Congress .And as if to ignite a petroleum socked mattress with fire, Chief Anthony Enahoro of the Action Group proposed a private bill to seek for independence for Nigeria in 1956 in a parliament where the number of seats allocated to the North was being challenged as inflated and over representative of the North by both the East and the West, characteristically ,the Action Group and the NCNC. But the NCNC and the Action Group were not the best of friends. They had their differences in the position of Lagos. The Action Group wanted Lagos to be part of the Western Region but the NCNC would not have that. The new constitution made Lagos a separate entity. Gbegegbe Leko wa. Eko osi nkoro.
Enahoro’s motion was volatile, precipitating the Kano riot between the Action Group in 1953 over the difference on the space of colonization as the AG insisted on independence sooner than the NPC wished. The constitutional crisis precipitated by these events prompted the urgent need to redraw the constitution which Governor Lyttleton took seriously. In a London Conference prior to the Lyttleton Constitution, the Action Group disagreed again on the position of Lagos as the NPC and NCNC supported the idea of a separate Lagos Community and so, the constitution established Lagos as a federal territory. The Constitution of 1954 gave Nigeria a federal system with a strong centre as any region that wished was offered self government by 1956. I t gave Cameroun regional status by which Northern Cameroun remained with continued association with Northern Region while the Eastern Cameroun was separated from the East as a quasi -federal territory. Most importantly, it laid down the basic pattern for a self governing institution.
And yet the Littleton Constitution was very defective as there was no provision for the position of a Prime Minister in the Central to provide the much needed leadership without which the government would drift. Even the so called legislative functions ostentatiously granted the Council could be undermined by the power to legislate in the interest of good government granted to the Governor General at the Central and the Governor in the Region .But the constitution provided virtually quasi -legislative forum and executive experimentation to the nationalists to learn the rope and it also provided dignified judicial system culminating into the creation of the Supreme Court.
The Littleton Constitution led to a road map for Nigerian independence as it was only slightly amended to give independence to Nigeria in October 1, 1960.
But Nigeria could not manage the fruit of her independence as the government succumbed to a military rule on January 15 leading to the death of his first Prime Minister, Alhaji Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, the Premier of the West, Chief SLA Akintola and Sir Ahmadu Bello, Premier of the Northern Region and some prominent Nigerians including the Minister of Finance, Chief Festus Okotie-Eboh.
In 1959 an election was held for the control of the legislature and thereby the government as Nigeria was goaled towards a parliamentary democracy.
The election justified the fear and the criticism of the Action Group and the NCNC that the North was over represented in Parliament in the Littleton Constitution as the NCNC/NEPU Alliance with its base in the South East won 73 seats with its 2,595,577 votes whereas NPC won 142 seats with its 1,992,178 votes. The Action Group/UMBC Alliance with its base in the South West won 73 seats with 1,922,364 votes. The NEPU was a minority party from the North (Kano) led by Alhaji Aminu Kano while the UMBC was another minority party from the Northern Middle Belt by Mr. Joseph Tarka.
Ironically the NPC and the NCNC formed a government headed by Tafawa Balewa as Prime Minister with the NCNC/NEPU with higher plurality votes treated as minority party because the lesser votes of the NPC fetched it more seats through political gerrymandering.
Thus the basis for distrust had been built in the Nigerian polity before independence. If that was a remote cause of the first challenge to stability, an internal problem of the AG was its immediate cause as the crack in the wall of the party gave way to the invasion by the proverbial lizards.
The Action Group was embroidered in an internal crisis precipitated by policy differences among the leaders. Chief Ladoke Akintola, the new Premier of the West after Awolowo preferred a romance with the NPC with the view of preserving the North for the NPC. This was against the principle of a national party formation envisaged by the majority of Action Group leaders .These differences led to the political defiance ( Akintola Taku) that led the Action Group members in the House of Assembly to want to oust Chief Ladoke Akintola as Premier of the West. The crisis led to the declaration of State of emergency by the federal government with the appointment of Dr. M.A.Majekodunmi as Administration of the Western Region, an ignition of what Chief Anthony Enahoro predicted in the parliament as the beginning of a chain of events, the end of which nobody knew.
This chain of events that led to the imprisonment of the leader of opposition, Chief Obafemi Awolowo leading to the first military coup is still a recurrent decimal in the polity of Nigeria today. Since then, Nigeria is still hovering around looking for the politics of accommodation.
The military take over of January 15, 1966 led to the crowning of Major General Aguiyi Ironsi as Military Head of State. Six months later, a retaliatory coup masterminded by northern officers like Murtala Mohammed and Theophilous Danjuma led to the crowning of Lt.Colonel Yakubu Gowon as Military Head of State. The era of Yakubu Gowon witnessed a 30 month civil war as Lt. Col. Odumegwu Ojukwu challenged his claim to leadership and attempted to pull the East out of Nigeria as the Republic of Biafra. The end of the war led to the complacency of Gowon’s regime after his commendable accommodation of the easterners into the Nigerian scheme under a policy of no victor, no vanquished. It was under General Gowon that Nigeria was changed into a twelve state structure, a measure that transformed the federal structure into a better political equilibrium.
But Nigeria continued to drift in corruption and indecision prompting General Murtala Mohammed to stage a peaceful coup against Gowon.
The Murtala Mohammed regime set the stage for a new constitution in 1979 under Gen. Olusegun Obasanjo who succeeded him after he was fell by the bullet of Lt. Col. Buka Suka Dimka.
Gen. Olusegun Obasanjo as Head of State handed over power to a Civilian regime with Alhaji Shehu Shagari elected President on the platform of the NPN with a controversial Supreme Court decision on the definition of two third of the 19 states structure created by the Murtala Mohammed / Obasanjo regime.
The Shehu Shagari government was toppled in a 1983 Coup after a moonslide rigging of election which led to the reign of Gen. Mohammed Buhari which itself was toppled by Gen. Ibrahim Babangida by August 27, 1985.
General Babangida established another Constituent Assembly to reform the Constitution. He dismissed all the political associations formed on the directive of his regime and instead formed two parties, National Republican Convention and the Social Democratic Party. An election in 1983 believed to have been won by Chief MKO Abiola as President was annulled by Ibrahim Babangida leading to a crisis of monumental catastrophe leading to his being forced to step aside in August 1993. Babangida‘s regime was succeeded by Ernest Sonekan as Head of State in an interim government which was toppled by Gen. Sani Abacha in November 1994.
The Abacha regime established a Constitutional Conference to look into the problem associated with the Constitution but his regime was terminated by his sudden death in June 1998.
The death of Gen. Sani Abacha led to the establishment of Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar regime which swiftly arranged a political transition program which he effected leading to the election of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, one time Military Head of State as President.
Obasanjo’s regime was significant in its consolidation of democracy in Nigeria. After his eight year tenure, he successfully transferred power to a democratically elected Alhaji Umaru Yar’Adua as President. Yar’Adua died in May 2010 and was succeeded by his Vice President, Dr. Jonathan Goodluck.
President Goodluck‘s challenge is how to conduct a free and fair election that would lead to a peaceful transfer of power in May, 2011.
Nigeria has come a long way. Despite all the problems associated with nation building, Nigerians have demonstrated to the whole world that it could be a united nation where tribe and culture differ in as much as 250 languages.
With 50 years of independence with a thirty month civil war behind it, Nigeria deserves a place of pride as the most populated black country with her nationals in different parts of the world as Professors and practitioners in Science and Arts and that is besides her being a major oil producer to the world. Happy golden jubilee to Nigeria, the deserved giant of Africa. May the labor of our founding fathers not be in vain. Long live Nigeria.

By Hon. Bari Adedeji Salau BA, MPA-IG
Investigator; Political Oversight and Organization Specialist

Monday, June 7, 2010


Guv, Na how u dey? U must dey Kanpe as OBJ would like to say; why don’t we organize a dinner night for u to crack u up for a night. I will fly in to stand up and poke fun on those who do not appreciate your efforts. I am sure you are not doing bad in empowerment of Lagosians; we always come across some of those in Yankee city with real bread as against professional struggle with nothing to take home after Uncle Sam’s heavy taxes. Never mind there is nothing u can do about that especially with porosity of government. 2011 IS HERE. What are u going to do? Someone said u do not care about those buffoons, ouch! Well I said is comedy time. Babangida is contesting never mind is consultative Babs. I started calling who is who in Nigeria for him, that is omoeko for u nothing gain nothing lost. Did u read my article on Maryam Babangida and Hospitals written by me as eulogy for IBB’s late wife? Read, please, from our blog site; Read the article I wrote titled NIGERIA NEEDS HELP written last year June and compare my take on the treaty to be signed in USA this week. The chief national security adviser to Jonathan is sending emissary around that he wants to contest the presidency too, he is not a politician like u and me: ouch comedy time, u are a governor I am a professional and Gussau is in government but if u are not a politician u will not clinch Lagos first citizen but u are a professional too hence u let them get away with too much. Among IBB and Gussau who will win? Let us here your take: work and no play? Guv/That FLOOD will hit u hard like u have never seen before trust me. No photo up of u going about inspecting the suspected worst areas over the years. Few examples: Oshodi Oke going to international airport; Front of palace hotel in Lagos; Surulere marsa area and oworonsoki where the downtrodden folks live. What is live anyway if full of care, no time to stand and stare. That drainage spanning through Mafoluku to Oshodi and Isolo-way emptying into a creek before going to the Lagoon can be a perfect photo up for u and your commissioner of environment. Thank God we misread u on change of cabinet; you see, we read too much into speculation. Sometimes politics is smacked of SOAP OPERA AND COMMEDY.


Friday, June 4, 2010


We are concerned citizens of Lagos who have brought to your attention various cases of corruption and abuse of office by former Gov Bola Tinubu and Gov Fashola in our previous publications.

In this publication, we bring to your attention once again monumental cases of corruption and abuse of office involving land matters in Lagos State perpetuated by the duo.
Over the past 10 years, both Tinubu and Fashola have been involved in various land scams including outright conversion of Lagos land for personal use, and given out state land and buildings to their cronies, political associates, public officials, members of security agencies, politicians and members of the various arms of the judiciary to achieve one interest or the other at the expense of Lagos tax payers. Tinubu in particular is the number one landlord in Lagos and has turned Lagos land worth trillions of naira into his personal possession to be used freely or given away unaccounted for.

Even after he left office, Tinubu still continues to steal Lagos land under the watch of Fashola. He is still giving out Lagos land to curry political favours, signing C of O and backdating them to period he was in office. Gov Fashola has photocopied Tinubu’s land grabbing style as he is also acquiring land for personal and political purposes.
These brazen acts of corruption by the duo have been with the active collaboration of select few public officers who have gotten obscenely wealthy at the expense of Lagos tax payers. Most notable are Gbenga Ashafa-formerly executive secretary and now Permanent Secretary, Land’s Bureau since 2001; Mrs. Awofisayo-formerly Permanent Secretary and now Special Adviser, New Town Development Authority (NTDA), and a relation of Bola Tinubu from Iragbiji, Osun state who has been in charge of NTDA since 1999; Hakeem Muri-Okunola-PA to former Gov Tinubu and now Executive Secretary, Land’s Bureau; Mrs. Nike Animashaun-Director, Land Services and known to be close to Bola Tinubu and Tunji Olowolafe. These people are arguably the wealthiest unelected public servants ever in the history of Lagos state. They are major wheelers and dealers of prime land. We mentioned in our earlier publication that the Land’s Bureau at Alausa stinks of corruption.

We catalogue below a few brazen acts of stealing and corruption committed by both Fashola and Tinubu on the good tax payers of Lagos. For ease of reference, we categorize these acts into two parts: the direct theft of prime land and properties and the use of Lagos land and properties to buy favours or pay off public officials at various levels.

A. Direct Theft of Lagos Land and Properties
Tinubu’s greed and primitive acquisition tendency knows no bound. In fact, it is believed that Lagos land personally converted by him is worth over N500 billion and growing because he hasn’t stopped. A few of them are listed below:
1. 4 Oyinkan Abayomi (formerly Queens) Drive, Ikoyi. A 5 bedroom detached house on 1 acre of Land which was a Lagos State Governor’s guest house since 1979 now belongs to Bola Tinubu. The C of O was signed and released to him by Fashola in 2007 shortly after he assumed office. The property is valued at N450million
2. Tinubu’s residence at 26 Bourdillon road, Ikoyi was initially falsely presented as Ondo Plc guest house. Later, he purportedly bought it from Ondo, and used public fund to rebuild and renovate it. Recently, the Lagos state government bought the property and paid undisclosed sum to him and thereafter gave the property back to him under the bogus Pension Bill he signed to law shortly before he left office in 2007. The property is worth over N600million
3. The annex of the Lagos State Guest House in Asokoro, Abuja was bought by the State Government in 2006 for N450million purportedly to protect the main house from security breach. Shortly after he left office, the property was transferred to him under the pension plan he signed into law before he left office.
4. The 250 hectare land valued at about N35billion strategically located at the Ajah junction on Lekki Road which was initially meant for a General Hospital for the people of Eti-Osa local government was stolen by Tinubu and handed over to Trojan Estate Ltd- a company owned by Deji and Wale Tinubu to develop as Royal Garden housing estate at the expense of the tax payers of Lagos
5. The 1,000 hectares of land valued at about N75billion located at Abijo at Ibeju-Lekki LG and given to LCC which is part owned by Tinubu and Fashola and being developed as golf course and housing estate by Assets and Resource Management Ltd(ARM) as ADIVA project
6. The prime land of 157 Hectares with 2.5km of Atlantic beachfront valued at about N10billion and stolen by Tinubu from the communities of Siriwon, Igbekodo, Apakin, etc in Ibeju-Lekki LG and given to Ibukun Fakeye-his crony to build a golf course and luxury villa with little or no compensation to the villagers. In addition, Tinubu paid $20million (N3billion) out of public treasury to Ibukun Fakeye to commence the project in late 2006. Fashola has since released additional funding for this project which is not owned by the state government.
7. The 1acre Parkview Ikoyi Estate foreshore land valued at N1billion reclaimed by Lagos State Government is now owned by Bola Tinubu.
8. While in office, he allocated to himself the former Strabag yard beside the Lagos state secretariat at Alausa, Ikeja.
9. Also the choice property at Lekki-Epe road on which he built and owns the multi-billion naira Oriental Hotel and the extension of multi-storey car park beside it. Also the multi-level recreation centre by Mobil in Oniru Estate on Lekki-Epe road jointly owned with ARM and Tunji Olowolafe. All these assets valued at over N25billion were obtained without paying a kobo to the Lagos State Government.
10. Tinubu and Fashola sold the following prime Lagos properties to their personal friend and front-Prince Dipo Eludoyin at very ridiculous prices:

•The 3.8hectares of land of Lagos State Fisheries office in VI (beside the Institute of Oceanography) valued at N3billion
•The Fishery landing jetty at Badore (where the Ilubirin fishermen were to be relocated) valued at N500million
•The entire Ogudu foreshore scheme initially earmarked for low cost housing scheme valued at N5billion
•The Ilubinrin housing estate (which used to house Lagos state civil servants and judges up till 2007) valued at N2.5billion
•The former Julius Berger yard at Oko Orisan, Epe valued at N450million
11. Tinubu raised a loan of N4.7billion on Eko Akete Project for which nothing was achieved before he turned around to sell the property to his Chagouri friends of C & C and Hitech Construction Ltd at ridiculously low price at the expense of the tax payers of Lagos.
12. Tinubu expended over N5billion of Lagos tax payers’ money on the bar beach shore line project and no further work has been done by the concessionaire to develop the Atlantic City project which was claimed to have been over-subscribed. We suspect the N5billion will soon become a complete waste given the temporary nature of the shoreline protection. The Federal Government in 2005 offered to handle this project at no cost to Lagos but Tinubu refused because of his personal interest and greed
13. Tinubu applied to personally purchase the Federal Secretariat building while in office. When he couldn’t get to buy it, he directed Fashola to stop the eventual owner of the complex to develop it. The complex is presently wasting away courtesy of the Lagos State Government.
14. It took several months of horse trading and underhand payments before Gov Fashola could allow the new owners of 1004 flats to redevelop the complex.
15. Several other buyers of Federal Government properties and developers of properties in Ikoyi, VI and GRA Ikeja were forced to succumb to the outrageous demands of Tinubu, Fashola, Commissioner Abosede and other officials of the Lagos State Physical Planning Ministry and were made to pay ridiculous amounts to private accounts before their redevelopments were approved. Those who refused or are unable to pay could not develop their properties. This is a major economic strangulation of property developers and has contributed largely to the sky rocketing rent in Ikoyi, VI and Lekki axis.
16. Tinubu converted all the plots of land where Lagos Polytechnic was located at Ikosi near the old toll gate. He chased away the polytechnic in 2006 and went ahead to locate the choice plots to himself, his cronies and political associates. The headquarter of Television Continental (TVC) which is owned by him is located there. He deprived the youths of Lagos of decent education because of his greed.
17. Tinubu single handedly sold the prime land on Aboyade Cole, VI which was recovered from some allotees, to UACN Properties Plc. The amount of proceeds was shrouded in secrecy

B. Use of Land and Properties to buy favours from public officials
This is an act of using Lagos prime land to buy favours and corrupt public officials. This act was perfected by Bola Tinubu as governor and now inherited by Gov Fashola:
•Several prominent Nigerians in the judiciary, police, INEC, and other sensitive agencies have obtained prime land from former Gov Tinubu and Gov Fashola over the years without paying a kobo. Many of them had turned around to sell the land to third parties at substantial profit.
•Many top officials in the police, INEC and the judiciary who participated in the 2003 and 2007 elections and tribunals in states where Tinubu has interest were compromised with parcels of free prime Lagos land and cash. If the Lagos State Land’s Bureau could publish the names and identities of beneficiaries of land allotees from year 2000 to date, the scandal that will result is better imagined. Gbenga Ashafa and Mrs. Awofisayo are the conduit through which these acts are being perpetuated. Both are also personally involved in various dubious land transactions on their own.
•Prime land and properties have been used to pay off public officials who are personally close to Tinubu and Fashola for ‘job well done’ or for being privy to sensitive information:
(a) Dele Alake, former commissioner for Information and Strategy was sold a whole house on Alexander road, ikoyi where he lived as official quarters at a giveaway price.
(b) Rauf Aregbesola, AC Osun State governorship candidate and former commissioner and Muiz Banire, still a serving commissioner got detached houses at Ladoke Akintola St., GRA Ikeja for the “good job” while serving under Tinubu.
(c) Yemi Cardoso and Wale Edun both former commissioners were sold houses on Iru close, and other location in old Ikoyi at giveaway prices by Tinubu. The list is endless.
•Gov Fashola was Tinubu’s Chief of Staff from 2002 to 2007. He was a part of these scams running errands for his boss to perpetuate these corrupt acts. He has since taken over as governor and has continued with these acts
•Gov Fashola in the wake of the petition against him presented by “The True Face of Lagos” to the House of Assembly has succeeded in buying his way out of trouble temporarily by bribing each of the 40 members with cash and prime state land at Abijo GRA off Lekki-Epe road. In addition, he bought a N40million bullet proof jeep for the speaker in a desperate bid to ward off investigation by the assembly.

These corrupt acts have deprived the tax payers of Lagos billions in revenue which could have been used for public projects. Indeed, the prime land stolen from the Lekki axis is enough to build the Lekki-Epe road without burdening residents and other tax payers with a 30 year concessioned toll road.
Tinubu recently came out with a full page advertorial in several newspapers to deny allegations against him that he influenced the President of the Court of Appeal on the on-going Sokoto State governorship case. We call on him and Gov Fashola and all those whose names are mentioned in this publication to come out and deny or explain these allegations against them. The public will no longer take their silence as ‘golden’
We wonder why Lagosians, particularly the educated elites stand by while these men are depriving the good tax payers of Lagos. Recently, in Delta state, eminent Deltans led by Chief Edwin Clark wrote a petition to EFCC on the various acts of corruption of former Gov Ibori which caused the EFCC to make another move to charge him to court again.
Where are the elders of Lagos? Where are the elders of Island club, Yoruba Tennis club, The Metropolitan club, Lagos Lawn Tennis club, Eko club, The Association of Lagos Indigenes, Oriwu club, and a host of others? Where are the popular commentators on corruption?
Where are the human rights activists? Where is the NBA and the NLC? Where are the vibrant civil society groups? Where is the powerful and vibrant Lagos media? Where are the social crusaders? Where are the religious leaders? Where are the traditional rulers, the Kabiyesis and chiefs particularly in the Lekki-Epe axis whose ancestral lands have been stolen and who have been deprived of their means of livelihood?
Why is there a conspiracy of silence by those known to be dogged fighters of corruption? Why are they watching as these men fritter away our collective wealth meant for us and future generation?
We should not expect any protection from the House of Assembly whose Speaker recently advised the group ‘The True Face of Lagos’ that leveled allegations of corruption against Gov Fashola to confront him with these allegations. What manner of Speaker?
We Lagosians should take charge of our own destiny. Let us join hands in the collective effort to call on the anti-corruption agencies, and in particular the EFCC, to act now and move into the Land’s Bureau and the State’s Treasury Office at Alausa to conduct a thorough investigation on Land matters from year 2000 to date. We assure the public that if this is done transparently, it might be possible to recover trillions of naira stolen from the tax payers of Lagos.
The Lagos Progressives is determined to continue to expose corruption and abuse of office prevalent in Lagos state. We have done three previous publications and have called upon the EFCC and ICPC to act and we hope this fourth publication will trigger the necessary actions from these agencies.
We thank the numerous members of the public who have responded with mails of commendations, moral and financial support. We want more of this from you and feel free to contact us by email And those who think they can intimidate us with their scare tactics, they have failed woefully
We make bold to say that our organization will not relent in our efforts to expose corruption in Lagos State Government and we still have many more releases for members of the public in the coming weeks. Please watch out for part 5 soon

Mr. Gbenga Thomas
The Lagos Progressives
Tel: 07065443358

Mr. Wale Onile-Ere
The Lagos Progressives
Tel: 08088662074

Thursday, June 3, 2010


We are concerned citizens of Lagos who are determined to fight corruption and expose the present Governor of Lagos in his corrupt tendencies and abuse of office. We have published the first and second part of our series for the information of members of the public who toil day and night to pay taxes to this government. In our first series, we catalogued several cases of corruption by the Governor and his immediate predecessor. Some of these were earlier publicized by the writers of “the true face of Lagos” while others were on the Lekki concession, land matters, bus assembly plant and the disappeared proceeds of sale of econet shares. The second series was on the Tejuosho market scam and the role of Governor Fashola.

Since our last publication, we have received hundreds of mails, text messages and phone calls by well wishers and other concerned Lagosians who commended us for this public service and demanded for more revelations. We are particularly surprised that many asked for more information on the facts of the Lekki-Epe expressway concession. It is based on this popular request that we have devoted this third series on THE LEKKI ROAD STORY AND THE ROLE OF GOV FASHOLA.
1. The Lekki-Epe express road was initially constructed by the Jakande administration and completed by the Mudashiru and Mike Akhigbe military administrations in 1987. The entire Lekki axis was then opened up for rapid development. Between 1985 and now, the corridor has been experiencing rapid and unprecedented urban growth as hundreds of new communities, developments and estates have developed which drew large population of low and middle income Lagosians.

2. The last administration realizing the urgent need to address the fast growing problem of road congestion conceived the idea of the expansion of the existing express road into a six-lane roadway, the construction of an alternate coastal road that will run from Ahmadu Bello way in Bar Beach, along the shores of the Atlantic ocean towards Ibeju-Lekki Local Government area. The third leg was the construction of a fourth mainland bridge, from Langbasa area near Ajah across the Lagos Lagoon to Ikorodu town and detouring somewhere to join the existing third mainland bridge thereby forming a circular road around Lagos.

3. A committee was initially set up which recommended the adoption of the PPP concept to handle the project since it was thought then that because of the magnitude of the project, the state government might have to collaborate with the private sector under a Private-Public-Participation (PPP) model to handle the project.

4. Thereafter, Tinubu’s greed took control. He floated a company-Lekki Concession Company (LCC) to handle the project as a consortium and appointed a financial advisory company ARM as the financial adviser.

5. LCC immediately asked for 1,000 hectares of prime land as the contribution of the state government to the project. This was immediately granted by Tinubu and he released the c of o within weeks for 1,000 hectares of prime at Awoyaya, Abijo, Eputu and Sapati all in Ibeju-Lekki Local Government Area. Part of the land is now being developed as ADIVA housing and golf course project by ARM

6. The project was later jettisoned after obtaining the hectares of land and other payments from the state government and in its place; the rehabilitation of the existing Lekki expressway was adopted by the consortium. There is no basis for a toll road and 30 year concession arrangement for a mere rehabilitation and expansion of an existing road which the government could afford on its own.

7. Indeed, the Federal Government under President Olusegun Obasanjo wrote to Governor Tinubu in 2006, offering to construct the coastal road free of charge to Lagos and its people from the Lekki Free Trade Zone to Ahmadu Bello Way in VI. He also sent a letter of commitment written by a Chinese construction firm to that effect. Governor Tinubu firmly rejected this offer and instead opted to abandon the coastal road project which the concession was initially meant for and instead signed a 30 year concession for a toll road to his company.

8. The rehabilitation work commenced in late 2006 with the expansion and rehabilitation of the Ozumba Mbadiwe end to Mobil building and the 49.4km main Lekki road rehabilitation started in 2007 shortly after Fashola became Governor

9. By this time, Fashola’s crony-Dr Tunji Olowolafe was made chairman of LCC and the entire contract was awarded to HITECH. HITECH is owned by both the Chagouris and former Gov Bola Tinubu who is the Chairman

10. LCC was given a 30 year concession (note that all their concessions are usually 30 years) with no competitive bid, no competing quote and no professional evaluation. The whole thing was packaged by Tinubu and executed by Fashola for their own selfish interest.

11. To further confirm this, Tinubu has built a multi-billion naira state of the art hotel-the Oriental Hotel along the express road. Conveniently, the toll gate is located a few meters before the hotel coming from VI so that the hotel clients wouldn’t have to pay toll. Even, special entry and exit points (including a roundabout) have been constructed for the hotel and the multi-level car park beside it (also owned by Tinubu) by the construction company using tax/toll payers’ money. Talk about creating a personal empire. One man owning an express road and a multi-billion naira hotel.

12. The 49.4km two-phased project is to cost an outrageous N50 billion which the innocent citizens and particularly the residents and indigenous communities of Lekki, Ajah, Epe and Ibeju areas will cough out over the next 30 years while Tinubu, Fashola, Olowolafe, the Chagouris and their other collaborators and their unborn generations will be smiling to the banks. A simple arithmetic shows that cost of construction averages N1billion per 1km. This did not include the 1,000 hectares of land and other costs already incurred by the Lagos state government. This must be the most expensive road anywhere in the world! Meanwhile, there will be 3 toll plazas in a 50km stretch!

13. Already, the rehabilitation work which started in 2006 has only achieved less than 2km in over 3 years; meanwhile, the consortium has only concentrated on building the toll plazas rather than first completing the two phases for the convenience of residents. Residents in these areas spend more than 6 hours daily on the road while the situation will get worse during the coming rains. This has disrupted the lives of the citizens and no proper alternate road was constructed by the consortium.

14. The entire Lekki axis hosts millions of indigenous people who are fishermen and farmers and have occupied their lands for centuries. They are largely poor and agrarian from villages like Ajah, Badore, Elegushi, Ajiran, Sangotedo, Abijo, Ibeju, and all communities in Eti-osa, Epe and Ibeju-Lekki Local Government areas. These indigenous people along with others living in the area are now being forced to pay toll to enter and exit their fatherland.

15. These people who have been subjected to economic misfortune occasioned by seizure of their lands by this government are now been economically drained by the imposition of toll gates within their communities. There has never been any consultations with the people neither was there any environmental impact assessment before the commencement of the project.

This is the biggest fraud ever conceived!
(a) A road that was initially constructed by two previous administration and that belong to the Lagos State Government is now being jointly owned by Tinubu-the former governor and Fashola-the present governor through his crony-Dr Tunji Olowolafe under the consortium LCC

(b) LCC was appointed without conforming to the Public Procurement Act of 2007. There was no public bidding process, no competing bids from other consortium and the fact that the former Governor and the present Governor have personal interest is criminal in nature.

(c) LCC will collect toll from the taxpayers of Lagos over the next 30years. The amount to be collected was not subject to any negotiation or law by any regulatory agency. Which means it is arbitrary and could be changed without notice anytime through the duration of the 30 year lease.

(d) In addition, landowners and prospective builders of homes are being charged heavily as infrastructural charge, land use charge and personal income tax and are now required to pay road tax or toll. This is multiple taxation in its worst form.

(e) The people’s livelihoods have been disrupted for the past 3 years without compensation and there is no alternate road anywhere as it is in practice in other parts of the world where there are toll roads.

(f) A concession that was granted for the building of a coastal road, 4th mainland bridge and expansion of Lekki road has now been turned into mere rehabilitation of an existing road for the same 30-year concession. This is fraud

(g) Fences are being built around the toll areas to box residents within the area. This has security and safety implications. If there is a major emergency like major armed robbery operations, civil crisis, major floods, fire incidents etc and residents need to be evacuated in a hurry; there will be major massive bottleneck at the toll plaza as there is no other escape route except through the lagoon or Atlantic Ocean. Remember the Oke-Afa mass drowning incident of 2002. God forbid!

(h) The owners of LCC have also received cash payments and land grants from Lagos state government in addition to the 30 year toll. These payments and land grants were initially made under the agreement that the 4th mainland bridge-Lekki road-coastal road would be built. It is therefore criminal to obtain compensation for a project only to turn around and reduce the scope.

(i) Several prominent Baales, residents and associations have voiced their objections over the years but were arrogantly ignored by government and LCC. The Eti-Osa Heritage Group, Concerned Residents of Lekki-Ajah (COROLA) and other Indigenous groups have expressed reservations and berated LCC for what they considered inequitable for the residents.

(j) We indeed wonder what the Lagos State House of Assembly is there for if it cannot raise its voice to protect its citizens. The House is indeed culpable as it remains ineffective when this entire charade is going on under its watch or is the House of Assembly another conquered territory of both Tinubu and Fashola?

(k) We call once again the anti-corruption agencies particularly the EFCC to take immediate steps to commence investigations into the activities of the LCC, ARM, former Governor Tinubu, Governor Fashola, and Dr Tunji Olowolafe in this mega fraud. We wonder why the EFCC has not done what it did in states like Delta, Bayelsa, Plateau, Sokoto, Nasarawa, and Edo by carrying out detailed and comprehensive investigations into the books in Lagos State to expose the corrupt practices of those running the affairs of the state.

(l) We call on all residents in the entire Eti-Osa, Epe and Ibeju axis who would be affected one way or the other by this toll road to protest and resist this toll arrangement. We particularly call on the traditional rulers, and community leaders within the indigenous population who are being forcibly fenced in against their wish and forced to pay tolls to protest loudly and seek legal redress to resist this injustice.

(m) Finally, we call on all Lagosians to call the Governor to order and to condemn this flagrant corruption and abuse of office by the governor and his predecessor and their cronies.

The Lagos Progressives is determined to expose corruption and abuse of office prevalent in Lagos state.
We are not a faceless organization as we are willing and ready to come forward with facts and documents whenever any of the anti-corruption agencies invite us. We make bold to say that our organization will not relent in our efforts to expose corruption in Lagos State Government and we still have many more releases for members of the public in the coming weeks. Please watch out for part 4.

Mr. Gbenga Thomas
The Lagos Progressives
Tel:07065443358 Email: lagosprogressives@yahoo.

Mr. Wale Onile-Ere
The Lagos Progressives
TEL: 08088662074

Wednesday, June 2, 2010


We are concerned Lagosians who recently brought to the attention of the people of Lagos state a catalogue of fraudulent transactions and corrupt practices of the Lagos State Government under the caption “The other face of Lagos”
. This is the second in the series of corrupt and fraudulent activities of this government for the attention of well meaning Lagosians.

Tejuosho market which was gutted by fire a few years ago is now being re-built by a company owned by Dr Tunji Olowolafe-a known front and lackey of Gov Babatunde Fashola. We catalogue below, series of events from 2004 to date:

1. For the avoidance of doubt, Tejuosho market was built in the early 70s during the regime of Brigadier Mobolaji Johnson as a model market. Phase 2 of the market was completed during the time of Alhaji Jakande in the early 80s. The market was however, gutted by two mysterious fire first in 2004 and then 2007 when it was completely destroyed and innocent traders lost billions of naira worth of goods and properties.

2. Rather than the government conducting the usual enquiry to determine the immediate and remote causes of the fire incidents, it instead hurriedly displaced the traders without compensation. It is curious that the solid structure that had stood the test of time over three decades was suddenly and completely razed by mysterious fire

3. The Tinubu government then decided to re-build the market and accepted a proposal from a consortium known as Market Design & Management Company Ltd (MDMC) to design and build at a cost of N1.6billion. MDMC intended to build and sell at an average cost of N2million per shop. During the process of contract negotiation, the hapless shop owners got wind of the plans and protested strongly suspecting rightly that other interests might hijack the project and priced it out of their reach. The matter was reported to the House of Assembly who invited the consortium and other government officials for hearing. The consortium assured the house that it will sell the shops at not more than N2million and will give priority to the 220 traders already displaced.

4. Despite the protest, the government concluded negotiation with the consortium after completing due process and thereafter gave a letter of engagement to MDMC to build a framed structure size of 149m long x 76m wide on three floors with a roof level car park for 284 cars and 1,251 lock shops on the ground, first, and second floors. The facility would also include 1,047 steel framed and roofed klee klamp stores and other service facilities.

5. Immediately Governor Fashola was sworn in, he moved quickly to hijack the project. By August 2007, the commissioner Abosede Francisco in collusion with Ibile Holdings approached MDMC to sell the project to Dr Tunji Olowolafe. MDMC resisted the overture and threatened to take legal action against the state government, but they were eventually forced to transfer the project to Dr Tunji Olowolafe

6. The Fashola administration immediately jerked up the contract cost to N5billion and awarded the contract with a term of 30 year concession Dr Tunji Olowolafe. Despite the fact that project is yet to reach 30% completion, the shops are already being sold for between N8million to N10million.

7. The interest of the original shop owners have been wiped out and no provision for petty traders and market men and women was made. These people are now suffering untold hardship and many have been rendered in penury. This government has not shown any concern but rather has been profiting from their woes.

8. A pattern is now emerging whereby the state government deliberately destroys notable markets meant for petty traders and gives the lucrative real estate to its cronies who masquerade as developers under shady and fraudulent circumstances and at the expense of innocent but poor petty traders. For example, Oyingbo market has been demolished and abandoned, and the traders displaced after several billions have been paid to Prince Dipo Eludoyin-another front and crony of the Governor. Indeed Prince Eludoyin is a major beneficiary of questionable land deals like Ogudu foreshore and Ilubinrin government estate. Oluwole market in Lagos Island has been demolished; traders displaced and land concessioned to Dr Tunji Olowolafe under questionable deals. Other markets with same pattern include Mushin Ojuwoye, Iponri, and Gbaja in Surulere.

9. We urge residents and traders in these markets to be vigilant against this pattern of mysterious fire only for these cronies of government to surface as developers under questionable and shady long term concession deals.

10. In addition, other popular markets have been penciled down by the state government for similar treatment. The owners/traders of sura, obalende, sandgrouse alade market in ikeja, alaya bi agba in ajegunle etc should also be vigilant and watchful.

11. Indeed it is on record that this government and its immediate predecessor have not built a single market for petty traders in the last 10 years.

The Lagos State House of Assembly is aware of these issues and has been silent about them.

The Lagos Progressives is determined to expose corruption and abuse of office prevalent in Lagos state. We challenge the anti-corruption agencies to take immediate steps to arrest and prosecute all persons involved in this fraud and investigate Governor Raji on these shady and fraudulent transactions. We wonder why the EFCC has not done what it did in states like Delta, Bayelsa, Plateau, Sokoto, Nasarawa, Edo, etc by carrying out detailed and comprehensive investigations into the books in Lagos State to expose the corrupt practices of those running the affairs of the state.

We are not a faceless organization as we are willing and ready to come forward with facts and documents when the House of Assembly or any anti-corruption agency invites us. We make bold to say that our organization will not relent in our efforts to expose corruption in Lagos State Government and we still have many more releases for members of the public in the coming weeks. Please watch out for part 3


TEL: 07065443358

TEL: 08088662074