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Landowner Petitions Nigerian Army Commander, Police Commissioner After Soldiers Brutalise Builders Over Land Dispute

The petition was filed by the BADR M. B & CO and addressed to the two senior officers on the 21st of February and the 2nd of March respectively.

A landowner in the Awowaya area of Ajah, Lagos State, Alhaji Alatoye Folorunso Azeez has petitioned the State Commissioner of Police and the General Officer Commanding 81 Division over soldiers’ invasion of his building site and subsequent harassment of workers. 

The petition was filed by the BADR M. B & CO and addressed to the two senior officers on the 21st of February and the 2nd of March respectively. 


According to the petitions, a certain Mrs Edith Ude who claimed she acquired a large parcel of land in the area engaged the services of military officers to harass, embarrass and intimidate citizens in the environment. 

However, the traditional landowners countered her claim, stating that neither Ude nor any Major General acquired a piece of land from them (the landowners). 

It was gathered that on February 12, military officers in their numbers invaded the construction site of Alhaji Azeez and arrested workers, took them to Ude's house and brutalised them. 


This was after the soldiers had allegedly pulled down the fence of the building measuring about 2.160 feet on one side.

The first petition addressed to the Commissioner of Police stated, “On Saturday 12th February 2022, workers engaged by our Client on his acquired six acres of land to work on were already on-site early that morning (12 February 2022) when suddenly officers numbering about seven (7) in military camouflage drove a military pickup van with registration number DHQ-239 swooped on them and marched them out of the land to the apartment of the said Mrs. Edith Ude, falsely imprisoned them in order to mercilessly torture and beat them black and blue without stating what offence they have committed. 

“The matter was thereafter reported to the office of the Military Police at the Bonny Camp, Ikoyi where three military policemen accompanied our client to Godwin Estate residence of Mrs Edith Ude on Sunday, 13th February 2022. 

“It was at her private Godwin Estate that it was discovered that the number plate of the said pickup van was attached to the office of the Garrison Commander, Defence Headquarters Abuja; consequently a petition was submitted to the GOC 81 Division, Bonny Camp.

“Our Client reliably informed us that, officers of the Nigerian Army are still stationed on the land preventing our Client and his workers from working on the land without any lawful order from a court of competent jurisdiction.

“With utmost respect sir, no individual is constitutionally more important or more Nigerian than the other, we have taken the path of the law to ensure that violence is not encouraged, No One Has a Monopoly Of Violence! 

“Should this affront continue unabated despite our petition, we will be left with no choice but to return the anarchy they propose with anarchy!    

“Our demand: on behalf of our Client we demand a thorough investigation into this unfortunate incident and the culprit Mrs Edith Ude and all the military officers she is using be brought to book. 

“Until we together put a stop at oppressive tendencies because of advantages we have over some others, this country will never develop.

“It is a further demand of our Client that appropriate disciplinary measures be recommended for the erring officers when found culpable, otherwise the community itself may rise against this unholy encroachment.”

A second petition addressed to the GOC 81 Division identified the names of the offending officers as Brig. Gen. Odunukwe, Col. Preye Fakrogha, Lt. Godwin, Staff. Sergeants Kefas and Oscar among others.

According to the petition, the officers who have been warned by a court to refrain from getting involved in land matters recently ordered Ude to go and erect a signboard of Godwill Estate Association on the land and torture anyone found on it.

The officers were also said to have continually stationed men in military uniform on the land claiming to protect the land on behalf of one Godwill Estate Association despite the fact that the land is a subject of litigation in suit No. LD/238/2013.

It added, “Not much could be done with the complaint made at the Bonny Camp Military Police office because of the status of the officers involved. 

“That a court interim injunction was once granted against these officers on 14th June 2013, which the officers have ignored the court order till date.

“The officers have continued to claim that they bought about 140 hectares of land with only N25,000,000.00 (Twenty Five Million naira) only without proof.

“Whereas our Client who bought only six acres at N10, 800,000.00 (Ten million Eight Hundred Thousand Naira) with proof.

“Our demand: Immediate withdrawal of the officers stationed on our Client’s land. Removal of the Signboard erected on our Client’s land. Payment for the destroyed property of our Client. Payment for the hospital bill of the tortured workers."