Airport Project: Gov Oyebanji Assures Farmers of Adequate Compensation for Acquired Farmland
The Governor of Èkìtì State, Mr. Biodun Oyebanji, has promised to fairly compensate farmers whose farmland and harvest were affected by the construction of Èkìtì Airport.
Governor Oyebanji gave the assurance on Friday, when he met with the aggrieved farmers in his office in Ado-Èkìtì. The Governor appreciated the farmers for not resorting to violence in a bid to express their grievances.
The meeting was called to address issues of adequate compensation raised by the farmers during a recent protest in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital.
Stating that government was not unmindful of the fact that the farmland was their source of income, he assured them that government would work out just and proper compensation for them.
The governor added that government would sit down with the farmers and work out modalities it will adopt in paying them since government might not be able to pay the money at once.
“Let me first thank you for the step you took, you did not fight, you only resorted to a peaceful protest and I’m very happy about that. What that is teaching us is that each time we have disagreement, we should not destroy things, we should sit down together for dialogue.
“This matter is not difficult, what you are saying is not that you don’t want to cooperate with government to develop that place, you are only saying your right should be given to you. I have heard you. We will look into it and we will see how we are going to go about it because government may not be able to pay everything at once, but we will sit down with you and work out how to pay it in batches, so that everybody will get paid”, the governor said.
Earlier in his remark, the Edemo of Igbemo-Ekiti, Chief Ojo Awe, who spoke on behalf of the aggrieved farmers, thanked Governor Oyebanji for granting them audience, stressing that the governor was indeed a compassionate leader who cared about his people.
Chief Edemo lamented that the farmers in the nine affected communities whose lands were acquired for the airport project had lost huge amounts of money they invested on the crops. He, therefore, urged the government to address their grievances and pay them their compensation.