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Osinbajo denies ownership of collapsed building, threatens to sue Sahara Reporters

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo SAN on Friday officially debunked rumours of ownership of the 21 story building that collapsed at Gerrard Road, Ikoyi, Lagos last Monday.

In a statement released by his Media Aide, Laolu Akande, Osinbajo said his has forwarded the story of an online platform, Sahara Reporters to his lawyers for possible legal actions for the lies it published against him.

Within the last 24 hours, many people have defended the integrity of the Vice President on allegations of his ownership of the collapsed building. Chief Michael Ade-Ojo, the Chairman of Elizade Group in a statement denied ever selling any property to Osinbajo. He equally denied ownership of the land on which the crashed building stood, saying his own property is beside the site ans he has no wish to sell it.

In another development, a group of friends of the Vice President also debunked his ownership of the building. In a statement signed by a senior journalist, Richard Akinnola, the associates denied that Osinbajo has any interest in the building.

Akande’s statement is the third, and the official one coming from the Vice President denying any interest whatsoever in the collapsed building.

The statement reads:

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, is saddened by the events that occurred in Lagos on Monday, 1st of November 2021, where a high-rise building under construction on Gerrard Road, Ikoyi, collapsed. He condoles with the families and relatives of all those who have died, were injured or affected in the collapse. Prof. Osinbajo considers this painful loss of lives a horrible tragedy.

Also, the attention of the Vice President has been drawn to an obviously sponsored falsehood regarding the recently collapsed building published by Sahara Reporters on November 4th, 2021, to the effect that:

1. The VP owns the land upon which the collapsed building in Ikoyi stood.

2. That the said land was sold to him by Chief Michael Ade. Ojo, Chairman of Elizade Motors; and

3. That the Vice President, at some point, intervened with the regulatory authorities in Lagos State to unseal the said property.

Let it be made absolutely clear that Prof. Yemi Osinbajo does not own and has never owned the said land.

He has also never been involved, in any shape or form, in the development of this or any other land since he became Vice President.

At no time whatsoever did the VP buy this or any other piece of land from Chief Michael Ade. Ojo, or entered into any transaction for the sale of that land or any other piece of land from Chief Ade. Ojo or anyone for that matter.

All property and assets owned by the Vice President have been publicly declared.

Also, the Vice President has never spoken to the Governor of Lagos State or any other official of the State Government regarding the unsealing of the said building on Gerrard Road, Ikoyi, which subsequently collapsed. He has, indeed, never acted to influence any other regulatory action on the collapsed building, or any other building for that matter, in Lagos State.

The Vice President restates categorically that he has no interest whatsoever, and has never had any interest, either legally or beneficially, in the land, the building or development.

The wickedness and viciousness of a lie that seeks to utilise a tragedy where so many people have lost their lives, even as rescue efforts are ongoing, and in wanton disregard to the feelings and untold grief of their loved ones for political gain, reveals a dangerous desperation, as well as the heartlessness of the perpetrators of such despicable lies.

Sahara Reporters were undoubtedly well rewarded for their criminal and inhumane conduct. Typical of a hatchet job and deliberately irresponsible journalism, the publication was not signed by anyone.

The Vice President has referred this disgraceful publication to his lawyers for prompt legal action.

Laolu Akande
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media & Publicity
Office of the Vice President
5th November, 2021

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