Fresh drama between OYSG, Ladoja over Bodija ‘farmland’ …govt erects warning signpost


By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan.
Fresh drama is now brewing between the former Governor of Oyo State, Senator Rashidi Ladoja and the Governor Abiola Ajimobi led government in the state over a parcel of land beside Senator Ladoja’s Bodija Ibadan residence.
The drama might not be unconnected with the erection of a warning signpost asking ‘trespassers’ to stay off the parcel of land beside the former governor’s residence said to be presently serving as Senator Ladoja’s farmland for growing vegetables, maize and other food crops.
New Nigerian gathered that the former governor though not claiming ownership of the land, has being making use of it for the past 20 years to grow cassava, vegetables and other crops for consumption.
Sources at the Ondo Street Bodija residence of the former governor said the situation assumed fresh dimension few days ago with the sighting of the mini iron sign board erected on the only footpath to the land which was few meters to Senator Ladoja’s residential house with a bold inscription “This Land belongs to Oyo State Government”.
Apart from Senator Ladoja’s cassava, vegetables and others, the plot of land also houses a mentally challenged man who constructed a make-shift abode with nylon and waste papers said to had being living on that plot of land for more than 15 years.
It was gathered that the sudden erection of the signpost few meters to the residence of the former governor at this particular time with his cassava and other food crops already fully grown is raising curiosity and suspicion in and around the old Bodija community.
Commenting on the signpost during his visit to the land, Senator Ladoja was said to have declared that there was never a time he contended ownership of the parcel of land in question with the the state government but that he only make use of the land to plant farm products.
Senator Ladoja stressed that when the warning sign post was erected by the state government, members of the community were surprised on the action of the government on the plot of land .
He pointed out that there was never a time he laid claim to the plot of land, that he has been farming on it for the past 20 years to grow vegetables and other crops for consumption as being speculated by some people in the state.
“What I think is that some people in the government had gone to the governor to spread the rumour that me, Ladoja has claimed the plot of land which is very untrue. So, suddenly, I was surprised to see this warning sign post that this land belongs to Oyo State Government. In the first place, I have not said this land belong to me. It is not my land . I only use the land which has been lying fallow for decades for farming. And that is why I have never planted anything that will take a very long time to harvest on the land because I know that any time the owner may come and said look I need my land. So, if that happens I will just remove the things I plant. What will I do with a plot of land, look from here to the other those buildings are mine,” he said.
The former governor added that “it is just unfortunate that some people in government may believe that Ladoja want to claim the land. For what?” he asked rhetorically.


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