The Oyo State Government, through its Housing Corporation, on Wednesday insisted that the State Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi gave a plot of land to Senator Rashidi Ladoja free of charge, saying that Senator Ladoja acknowledged receipt of the land with appreciation in a letter dated May 14, 2017 and titled Re: Application for the Allocation of Plot 26, Ondo Street Bodija Estate, Ibadan.
The government’s position was stated in a statement issued in Ibadan by the Acting General Manager of the Oyo State Housing Corporation, Tpl S. O. Adekunle, saying that the corporation is not in receipt of any letter requesting for the backing of the Governor’s statutory payment waiver authority and cost of allocation. It also wondered why a former Governor would ask such an elementary question having been in the saddles.
The Government said that the media aide to Senator Ladoja might be uninformed about the true state of developments, hence, his earlier misguided and untrue statement, explaining that Senator Ladoja applied for the land in a personally signed letter dated 14th of July 2016 and titled : Application for the Allocation of Plot No 26, Ondo Street.
The government noted that the letter, which was written on Senator Ladoja’s personal letter headed paper was addressed to the General Manager, Oyo State Housing Corporation Estate (OYSHC), Bodija and a copy was sent to His Excellency, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, Governor of Oyo State.
According to the government, “The government wouldn’t have joined issues with the former governor over a matter which was simply a benevolent act of the Governor but for the malicious, insulting and integrity impugning statement of calling Governor Ajimobi a liar. All documents including the application as well as acknowledgement letters concerning the allocation of land are in our custody.
“The letter from Senator Ladoja read in part, ‘I wish to apply for the allocation of the captioned landed property. The abandoned landed property was sharing immediate fence with my house and I have engaged the land to prevent the place been (sic) used as hide-out for criminal and people of questionable character for over 20 years. In fact, on many occasion (sic), we have to forcefully repel the criminals who constituted security risk to us in the environment. It is on record that I have not been allocated any land either in new or old Bodija by your corporation. In fact where I reside presently was purchased from the original allotees” the government disclosed.
The government stated that it responded in a letter dated May 11, 2017 and signed for the General Manager, OYSHC, by one Mr. S. Toyeshe Lawal with the following contents, ‘I am directed to refer to your letter dated 14th July, 2016 in respect of the above captioned subject matter and to inform you that His Excellency, Senator Isiaq Abiola Ajimobi has magnanimously approved that the parcel of land lying on Plot No. 26 of Survey Plan No.Ib.1128 being No. 26, Ondo Street at Bodija Estate, Ibadan be allocated to you free of charge as a benefit that should accrue to you being one time Governor of the State’.
The government stressed that Senator Ladoja replied with a personally signed appreciation letter dated May 14 and addressed to the General Manager, OYSHC, with the following as content, “This is to acknowledge, with thanks, the receipt of your letter dated 11th May 2017 informing me that His Excellency, Senator Isiaq Abiola Ajimobi has magnanimously approved the allocation of the above plot of land to me. I HEREBY ACCEPT THE ALLOCATION.
“Please find enclosed with this letter the duly completed Application Form for your kind processing. While thanking you immensely for this rare gesture, you will kindly convey my appreciation to His Excellency, the Executive Governor,” Senator Ladoja’s letter read.
The government maintained that Governor Ajimobi did not make the statement to spite former Governor Ladoja but to show the cordial relationship between the two parties in which the former Governor has benefitted immensely.