Yusuf Lateef Olarinde has alleged that a businessman, Elias Nnanna Ukachukwu, was behind his travails, insisting that he wanted him dead.
• My life in danger – Olarinde
• He’s a criminal, serial liar, Ukachukwu alleges
Two men in Lagos are locked in a bitter quarrel with land at the centre of their fight.
Yusuf Lateef Olarinde, son of the Oba-elect of Oguntedo community, a sprawling suburb in Satellite Town, Lagos State, has alleged that a businessman, Elias Nnanna Ukachukwu, was behind his travails, insisting that he wanted him dead.
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Olarinde alleged that Ukachukwu wanted to kill him in order to claim his family land.
However, Ukachukwu has denied all the allegations, describing Olarinde as a criminal and serial liar who was wanted by security agencies. He also insisted that Olarinde was out to rope him into a matter that was altogether his problem.
Olarinde alleged that, three weeks ago, he escaped an attempt on his life when some unidentified group of boys opened fire on him, shattering the back windshield of his car.
“After the last incident, where I was almost shot dead, I saw one of the land speculators, Elias Ukachukwu, pasting a notice with the inscription, ‘keep off, military zone,’ on the fence on my family land. He was in company with five other persons. I was shocked because he was personally doing that. I even took photographs of the posts.
“To me, his action was an indication that some people were showing interest in our land. So, I quickly tried to erect a structure in my own portion of the said land because it is jointly owned by members of our family.
“I was erecting a structure on my own portion when the same Ukachukwu stormed the place with around 10 men to warn me to stay off or be harmed.
I recognised about four of the people that came with him. There was a certain Hausa man with them too. He said he would deal with me if I didn’t stay off the land. He even boasted that the police are his boys and that he would ensure that I was sent to prison, where I would be subsequently killed.”
Olarinde further alleged that Ukachukwu was the mastermind of the last assassination attempt, which almost claimed his life. He, therefore, called for help from the Lagos State governor, Akinwunmi Ambode.
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Asked why he had not reported the matter to the police and whether he no longer had confidence in
the police, he said: “Actually, I don’t have confidence, especialy in the Lagos police, because we have made every effort to reach out to them but they did not give us any positive response.
“Ukachukwu and his cohorts had earlier alleged that we were criminals. We have tried to prove our innocence; we have made a counter-petition and publication to tell Nigerians that we are not criminals. Rather, it is our land that some people want to take away from us and we have already gone to court to seek redress.
“Ukachuwku and his group are only trying to frame us up so as to takeover our land. He is the arrowhead of the campaign to destroy my family and claim our family land.
“He hijacked the land earmarked for a shopping complex, football field and playground for the entire residents of Satellite Town and named it Jerusalem Estate. The place has been fully developed. He is also behind the development of Sand Field Estate. I am sure he doesn’t have any other place to develop and that is why he is moving into my family land. The land I am talking about now is the place where the Federal Government resettled us after our ancestral home was taken over for public use.
“He has become a threat to me and my family and has been boasting that, with his money and influence, nothing would stop him from achieving his aim, which is to seize our family land.
“Right now, I am in hiding because he wants me dead. I can no longer continue with my business. I cannot go near the place again for fear for my life.
“I call on the Lagos State governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, to save us from Ukachukwu by calling us to a meeting to that the issue will be resolved.”
When contacted, Ukachukwu denied all the allegations against him, describing Olarinde as a criminal and a serial liar.
He wondered why Olarinde could not report to the police, if his life was under threat as he alleged.
When confronted with the allegation that he (Ukachukwu) had been boasting of having the police at his beck and call, he said: “There is no truth in that whatsoever. As I talk to you, he (Olarinde) can’t go to the Satellite police because he is on the Inspector-General of Police’s wanted list. He is a criminal and murderer.
“Go into that village and investigate about him and his family. They killed somebody three weeks ago and for that reason they are on the run; he and his brother were declared wanted by the IGP and even the AIG Zone 2. His younger brother is still in Kirirkiri Prisons now, not because of me but because of the murder case.
“I don’t have any land issue with them. It is just that they robbed somebody and the person they robbed identified them and they were declared wanted. They are a terror to the community.
“As we speak now, the head of their family is in Kirikiri Prisons because of the killings and other crimes they committed; he and his younger brother are at large. So, I don’t know why they are mentioning my name in this matter that is entirely theirs.”
Reacting to the alleged pasting of a paper with the inscription ‘military zone, keep off,’ and the confrontation that led to the alleged threat to kill Olarinde, Ukachukwu said: “There is nothing a criminal will not say. Ask him properly. Go to Ilegbo, Satellite or Abulado and ask about them and you will understand what I’m saying. Go to the homicide unit of the police at Panti and find out about their case.
“I did not paste anything on any wall. How can he say that I want to kill him when I am not contesting anything with him? I am not contesting any land with him because he has not sold any land to me. If he said that I am threatening his life, let him go to the police and report the matter,” he said.