Earlier today, we brought you the story of Gosple Tungba maestro, Yinka Ayefele’s N200 million House of Music, that has been earmarked for demolition by the Oyo state government.
The singer who is still devastated by the turn of events has explained that he obtained all the required approvals from various authorities before he erected the edifice. He expressed dismay that the property situated on the land he duly purchased from the Ibadan Properties Company was marked for demolition.
“I will never go against the law. I’m not a novice who doesn’t know what step back is. We complied with the required set back according to the law. You see if you are looking at the house from a far it will look as if the roadis bent a bit which could make one to think the house is on the main road but if you get to thefront of the house you will see that the house is located far from the main road. We complied with the required 10 metersstep back to the main road. This road is a Federal Government existing road; it is not new or recently proposed road. The Federal Housing Authority approved it, we also did the certain meters of stepback to the existing main road but now that the government wants to extend the road, well, no problem with that. There are ways to it. There are other areas in the same locality that can be used. Baba Arisekola’s filling station is close by too and the demolitionplan is far from it, it does not affect it.”
The singer said as at yesterday Monday 8, 2012, he was yet to be served with any letter or notice to the effect that his building would be demolished.
“ All I saw was just this X mark in red this morning on the building. I have never been written or told by anybody that the building will be demolished. Besides, since I learnt about this, I have been broken down since yesterday. I’m down, troubled; in fact I cannot concentrate on my next studio album since I heard the news that the House of Music has been marked for demolition. This is my sweat over the years and I’m appealing to Governor Ajimobi and the good people of Oyo State to look into this matter all over again. I believe there is a way out.”
Asked if he had pulled his influence as a prominent musician to have the ears of influential Oyo State indigenes to get the government to reverse the decision, he said.
“I think the best I can do is what I’m doing now and I’m appealing to the Governor to look at it all over again. I know there is a way out.This is all I have sweated for and I can never be the same if it’s demolished. Not even any form of compensation can appeaseme or make me happy. The building if I want to estimate is worth N200million but the compensation is not on my mind.”
There were speculations that Ayefele, though a gospel artiste was perceived as a supporter of the former governor of Oyo State, Chief AlaoAkala. Could the planned demolition have political intonation? “I don’t think so. I’m not a politician, I’m an artiste. I don’t have problem with anybody and with due respect I don’t think Governor Ajimobi is thinking like that. Yes, it’s about urban development of the city but I know if the matter is looked into critically the building will be exempted. We carried all due diligence when we wanted to put up the structure and the records are there.
Ayefelewho also dispelled reports that he had an eye surgery recently, hinted that he personally bought the piece of land the House of Music is erected contrary to insinuations thatit was given to him by Ibadan-based business mogul and Are Musulumi of Yorubaland, AlhajiAlaoArisekola. “Don’t mind those reports. I never had an eye surgery. It was a journalist’s thought. It was (name withheld),he said he wanted to make some sales and I don’t think it’s fair enough.
On the land, he said: “I actually bought the land from the Ibadan Properties Company. I have all my papers to that effect. But it’s very painful that after I erected the building I have moved from one matter to the other. Do you know that for the past two years I have been in court over the land? Though the Ibadan Properties Company insisted they have no issues with the OmoOnile(land speculators) but we have been in court since. Just three months ago, I took it upon myself to settle amicably with the Omoonile(land speculators). I paid themoff justrecently andnow the demolition matter came up. I can only appeal to Governor Ajimobi to please consider the fact this all I have labored for all my life. This is my sweat.”