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In what will come across as a rather dramatic development, many Isoko youths in Delta state and ex-Niger Delta agitators have protested against what they described as “Satanic and illegal” demolition of a multi-million naira mansion belonging to Prince Joseph Kpokpogri, estranged lover of controversial Nollywood actress, Tonto Dikeh, by the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) in Abuja.
The over N700 million mansion at Guzape, Asokoro, Abuja, according to Kpokpogri, was invaded on Saturday, May 14, 2022, at about 8 am by officials of the FCT Administration with bulldozers. They subsequently demolished the building.
In a protest letter addressed to President Muhammadu Buhari, jointly signed by Mzee Fidelix, president of the Isoko Development Union-Youth Wing, Onoriode Gold Omagufi, president of the Isoko Youth Assembly (IYA) worldwide and Joseph Okor, president, Ex-Niger-Delta agitators and obtained by SaharaReporters, the Isoko youth groups and the ex-Niger Delta agitators, Isoko chapter, expressed displeasure with the demolition of Kpokpogri’s building.
They described Kpokpogri as one of Isoko’s illustrious sons.
The groups, while calling for what they termed as “adequate and compulsory compensation” for their son, Kpokpogri, accused the Nigerian government and officials of FCTA of clamping down on southerners.
They alleged that Kpokpogri’s house would not have been demolished if he was a Northerner.
“On behalf of Isoko youths, we the presidents of the various Isoko youth bodies viewed the demolition as out of jealousy, wickedness, inhuman and unlawful. We frown on the high level of the dehumanisation meted out to the personality of our fellow young colleague, Kpokpogri, with great vision and a law-abiding citizen even at the instance of the undue process in which his mansion that was built with his hard-earned money was suddenly and so urgently demolished without a slight notice by the Federal Government of Nigeria through the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory.
“The demolition was so barbaric; we see it as an action carried out against a second-class citizen and a commoner by a sectional government that is feeding fat on our country. From all indications, the authority in charge of buildings had done their survey, approved it, and given our brother the go-ahead to build the structure, coupled with close supervision before he was able to erect such a gigantic mansion in the heart of Nigeria. Why did the same people who once gave approvals, approach from behind and demolished the building?
“The question currently burning in the hearts of many citizens now is that assuming the house was owned by a northerner, would the minister of FCT have the guts to give executive order for its demolition? The answer is capital NO! We as Isoko youths can’t continue to fold our hands while handicapped and crippling creatures in human form intend to stretch their fingers to blind our eyes in a broad daylight. The worst of it all is that every bonafide stranded Isoko son and daughter henceforth has no cover over his or her head because it was this demolished mansion that was housing those stranded in the city of Abuja.
“We however charge the Federal Government, through the office of the Minister of FCT to reasonably give a compulsory compensation to our comrade brother and son, Prince Kpokpogri to ease the psychological defect meted out to him. We, therefore, beckon on Isoko political and opinion leaders; council of Isoko traditional rulers; His Excellency, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, governor of Delta State; Niger-Delta and South-South leaders to wade into this issue and do the needful before it gets out of hands. A stitch in time saves nigh.”
The Federal Capital Territory Administration had given reasons for the demolition of Kpokpogri’s mansion, claiming the building did not get approval from the necessary agencies. They alleged that Kpokpogri had refused to adhere to warnings when he started the building as the building was on a superhighway known as M-16.