Estate developers, building contractors and landowners in Osun have spoken out against the unchecked activities of miscreants locally called Omo Onile operating in parts of the state.
The developers say the unchecked activities of the miscreants, who claim to own lands in the state, has brought untold hardship to them.
The activities of the miscreants bioreports gathered has caused fear and panic among the community of professionals associated with building as well as prospective real estate investors.
An architectural technologist, Demilade Saheed revealed that professionals in the industry face a lot of assault, intimidation and threats daily.
He said the miscreants are not afraid of law enforcement agents anymore because the security personnel will be settled and they will go back and perpetrate such acts over again.
On his part, a social crusader, Mr. Deji Adefila, revealed to bioreports that on a visit to his construction site at Okinni in Egbedore local government council area of the state, the miscreants demanded money because the builders were about to roof the house.
According to him, “The money they are demanding now is different from what they have collected during the foundation laying and worse still they come in different groups.
“You may end up paying two to three teams at every stage of the construction. They have legalised the act and I am even tired.”
He explained that he had to beg the miscreants on two occasions, the second time, they settled for and collected N35, 000 from him.
The good side of the whole scenario he noted was that the miscreants would now act as security and ward off other miscreants from his property.
Earlier he had accused the state government of not doing enough to stem the growing tide.
An estate agent, Miss Wumi Oke said most of the acts are perpetrated in settlements and villages located far off from the main towns.
She alleged that the miscreants would frustrate construction work on building sites if they are not settled financially but if the police become involved they will disappear for a while.
She stated that “They will also come back to disturb the owner of the property if they want to roof the building. So it will be better if they are paid off once and for all.
“The money they collect from their victims ranges from eighty to thirty thousand Naira, depending.
“There are also cases where these miscreants would insist that they have to resell the landed property to the buyer. This is why we often advise buyers to have a title deed of their property.
“Armed with this document, they are legally protected. Before the title deed is obtained, there has to be a signed agreement between the landowners and the buyer.
“This agreement is what will be honoured at the ministry of lands and physical development where the new owner will be given a survey plan and Right of Occupancy (R of O). This is the document the government recognises and it cannot be contested.”
She maintained that the miscreants will still visit the property but their coming is just to demand money from the new landowner and nothing else.
bioreports reports that the increase in miscreant activities is occasioned by the boom in the rate at which landed properties are being developed within the state.
Meanwhile, a top officer of the Nigerian Police in the state in an interview advised victims to report such cases to the divisional police officer nearest to them or if within Osogbo, such cases should be reported at the Osogbo Area Command.