A political pressure group, Democracy Advocacy Network, has in very strong terms condemned the Thursday morning demolition of the Ilorin, Kwara State ‘Political Home’
of the Sarakis, describing the development as not only a direct attack on democracy,
but a provocative assault on the sensibility, integrity and an affront on the fundamental
rights and constitutional freedom of the Saraki Dynasty, the people of Kwara State and
Nigerians in general.
In a press statement issued from its National Secretariat on Thursday, the National President of the group, Alhaji Suleiman Hassan on behalf of the group said: “There is anger in the land following this morning’s demolition of the Ilorin Ancestral Political Home of the Saraki Family by the Governor Abdulrazaq-led-Kwara State Government.
“The dastard act carried out at the wee hours of Thursday amidst tight security is a clear instance of the ruling government’s intolerance for the opposition component of our
democracy as characterized in its incessant and intolerable harassment and intimidation
of the latter even when the case in question is before a court of law.
“The development is not only a direct attack on democracy, but a provocative assault on the sensibility, integrity and an affront on the fundamental rights and constitutional
freedom of the Saraki Dynasty, the people of Kwara State and Nigerians in general.
“We are worried that this is the height of political witch-hunting. Is this the way Nigeria is
going to move forward by playing the politics of vengeance? Is fighting against the legacies of a late man, Governor Abdulrazaq’s modality for delivering democratic
dividends to a people?
“What will he gain or achieve by demolishing the popular ”Ile Arugbo” (Old People’s
Home), which according to available records was built on a the parcel of land which the late politician lawfully acquired from the state government?
The demolition came barely one week after the employment of the instrumentality of the Kwara State House of Assembly and a resolution arising thereafter mandating Governor
Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq to revoke the Certificate of Occupancy and withdraw the
allocation. And based on this Governor Abdulrazaq signed the instrument to reclaim the land on the ground that same was unlawfully allocated to a private company contrary to the public purpose of its acquisition and occupied in breach of the terms of allocation.
Meanwhile, Dr. Bukola Saraki, former senate president, who also served as Governor of Kwara from 2003 to 2011has countered the government’s position, saying his late father
lawfully acquired the land from the state government.
“The property had been rightfully allocated to my late father under the name of one of
his companies, Asa Investment Limited, since the 1980s and contrary to the claim of the
Governor, the land was properly allocated and a Right of Occupancy title issued on it”
Saraki also said revoking the land is an act of vengeance from the state governor. “It should be noted that the excuse given by Abdulrazaq in his revocation order holds no water since it is clear that this is the height of his vengeance against my father, Dr.
Abubakar Olusola Saraki and I.
“This action is clearly a manifestation of vengeance; in his narrow-mindedness, he believes his victory at the polls is an empowerment, entitlement and enablement to
settle scores, provoke and pursue inter-family rivalry. They expected development and
fulfilment of promises.”