Landmark owner playing politics, says Umahi

Kunle Sanni

The minister of works, David Umahi on Wednesday, accused Paul Onwuanibe, the CEO of Landmark Africa Group, of politicising matters related to the Lagos-Calabar coastal road project.

Umahi remarked this while inspecting the demolition of structures on Lagos’ Landmark Beach.

The federal government recently began building of the Lagos-Calabar coastal route, which is anticipated to go through Lagos’ beach resorts and cross eight other states.

The project which ought to take eight years and will be constructed for N15trillion with a kilometre of the road will costing N4billion, the government had said structures encroaching on the designated right-of-way would be demolished, primarily shanties and not the main Landmark Beach Resort buildings. This has been a subject of controversy since the commencement of the project.

On April 18, Onwuanibe stated that the government had not formally contacted the resort over the project’s impact on the beach industry.

During the demolition effort, Umahi stated that the federal government only removed shanties on the seashore inside its 250-metre right of way.

The minister stated that the Landmark CEO is “seeking attention” and that he has no claim to the destruction of shanties on the right of way.

“No claim for Landmark. We spared all his infrastructure. We don’t pay for shanties. Shanties were on our right of way — 250 metres from the shoreline,” Umahi said.

“He has no claim. We make all the efforts to spare all his infrastructure. That is why I said he is a politician and I’m an engineer.

“While he plays politics, I do the engineering work. I don’t know the attention he is seeking for when things are very practical.”

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