A private radio station in Ado Ekiti, Our Peoples FM 104.1, believed to be owned by a former governor of Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose, was sealed off on Thursday by the state government for non-compliance with regulations.
Officials of state Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development and policemen from the Counter Terrorism Unit moved to the radio station and ordered the workers out after pasting the notice of closure on the building.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Lands, Mr Ademiloye Fasiku, said, “We are here basically to enforce compliance with urban development plan of government. We have given them notices but they never responded. We asked them to submit their approved plan for clearance but nothing was done.
Fasiku claimed four letters were written to the station on the need to comply with regulations, saying all the pleas were rebuffed.
Fasiku, who noted that there were discrepancies in the approved purpose for the building and mast, said, “Following these discrepancies, a penalty charge of N985,000 was recommended but was not paid.”
But the General Manager of the station, Mr Layi Oyawa, who said he did not receive any letter from the ministry, said, “The only letter I got was from the Signage and Advertisement Agency. Why is this coming at this time? However, we are going to address it the legal way.”
Oyawa condemned the manner the station was closed down, describing it as brutish.
He said, “The police that the staff of the ministry brought slapped me. They assaulted me and tore my suit; this is uncalled for. They said they wrote notices to us, who did they address them to? From whom did the letter emanate?”
Fayose, in his reaction to the sealing off of the radio station, described it as a prelude to alleged rigging the APC intended to perpetrate on Saturday and March 2.
The former governor, in a statement by his media aide, Lere Olayinka, said, “From information made available to the public by the radio station, the government requested for payment of N175 million as Signage Fee, which for all intent and purposes, was ridiculous.
“It is sad that Fayemi chose to take laws into his hands by ordering policemen attached to him to invade a private business premises and close it down without order of any court.”