A middle-aged man, Adeyemi Adebayo, who allegedly specialised in serving fake demolition notices and stop-work orders on buildings under construction in exchange for inducement, has been arrested in Lagos.
Adebayo, who claimed to have hailed from Osun State and resided in the Anuoluwapo area of Ilogbo in Ogun State, was apprehended by some officials of the Lagos State Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development on Monday after serving a demolition notice on a building under construction.
It was gathered that the workers on the site alerted the officials shortly after Adebayo served the demolition notice.
A source at the state secretariat said, “After he was arrested, the suspect was caught with four fake identity cards of the Lagos State Government.”
However, Adebayo said he was employed as a project staff by the Lagos State Ministry of the Environment about eight years ago, but was laid off without any benefit four years after.
The suspect, who claimed to be married but divorced, added that after being laid off, he had been working with his friend’s younger brother.
He said, “I used to work with the Ministry of the Environment. I was part of those employed as project staff and we worked there for good eight years.
“I was relieved of my job about four years ago. They just laid us off without any benefit and they did not collect their identity cards from us.
“The only thing I have to say is that when someone works for government, they should at least recognise the efforts of such person. You cannot just lay off people like that without anything. We all know the situation of the country. I know I don’t have the authority to do what I have been doing, but I have to survive.”
The spokesperson for the Lagos State Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development, Mr. Adeshina Odunuga, said Adebayo had been going about impersonating as a town planner with the ministry before he was caught.
Odunuga confirmed that the suspect had been handed over to the Rapid Response Squad of the Lagos State Police Command.