Some victims of land grabbing in Edo state have commended the state’s Private Properties Protection Committee, describing the members as peace advocates.
The victims described the committee, which is headed by retired Justice Alero Edodo-Eruaga, as being on the frontline of advocacy for the restoration of peace and harmonious living among communities.
A rural farmer from the Okhuoromi community, Mr. Michael Ehizogie, who spoke in Benin recently, said the committee had saved him from hypertension and subsequent death with the recovery of his grabbed land.
He said: “If not for this committee which recovered my landed property grabbed in Okhuoromi, my community, I would have been dead by now due to hypertension. It is the only tangible achievement I have made as a low-income earner who worked and retired from service over 10 years ago”.
Madam Helen Ohonba, whose son also recovered his land in the Obazagbon community, also showered encomiums on the state government and the committee.
She said: “This committee is a legacy committee by this government. God will bless Obaseki and all the members for standing by the truth that they have investigated and seen for themselves. Truth and Peace always prevail here”.
ln one of the settlement cases, Mr. Sunday Igbinedion, a petitioner, said respondents in his case were appealing to him to take N1m as settlement, but he refused and asked for more.
He said it had never happened, adding that victims of land grabbing now had cause to smile after visiting the committee.
Recall that the committee had over time recorded landmark resolutions addressing land grabbing and systematically guiding parties towards relinquishing grips on people’s property.
However, during the sitting, the Chairman of the Committee discouraged petitioners from filing cases before the committee and instituting cases at higher courts.
To assure the petitioners that the Committee would not compel parties to remain at its level in seeking redress, the chairman, however, advised.