The Delta State Government has raised the alarm over illegal activities of excavators in Umusadege Government Reservation Area, Kwale Community, in Ukwuani Local Government Area of the State, saying that efforts were being made to put a support to the act.
Mr. Chika Ossai, the State Commissioner for Lands, and Survey who confirmed to METROWATCH about the state government’s readiness to halt the illegal activities on Thursday in Asaba, said the excavators, mainly tipper drivers, are supported by a handful of individuals in the host community, adding that they have not only taken over Government’s lands, but destroyed farmlands of their host community.
He said: “this is humiliating, the government has set up secret security agents that will bring the excavators to book, they have destroyed government reservation area lands, including farmlands of their host communities maintaining that the police had been ordered to arrest any of the Excavators in the areas.
Investigation revealed that the excavators fled the scene of a deep burrow pit, some of which were over 10 feet deep on sighting the Commissioner with his armed mobile policeman during his inspection visit to the areas.
It was gathered that the fleeing excavators abandoned their trucks, work tools, and jumped into the thick forest where they reportedly hid themselves for fear of an arrest.
But one of them, Benjamine Okowe, told METROWATCH that: “we are involved in the excavation because of no job, we are doing it to eke out a living for ourselves, our families, and government is pursuing us here and there, what are we going to be doing”.
Further investigation revealed that the excavators had destroyed virtually all the economic lands of their host communities; a situation described by the Commissioner as absurdity and havoc especially to the government owned land, adding: “these excavators have finished government lands, we will bring all of them to book unless they vacate the scene”.