The Bayelsa State Physical Planning and Development Board has responded to the spate of negative publicity making the rounds in the state, trailing its decision to demolish a property belonging to Baraza Multipurpose Co-operative Society.
Baraza packed up after its inability to pay interest on investments to thousands of Bayelsans who had invested different sums in the co-operative ranging from hundreds of thousands to tens of millions.
Some media reports had accused the Executive Chairman of the Board, Alabo Gideon Ekeuwei of pursuing a personal vendetta because of his trapped funds in Baraza.
But in a statement on Thursday, the Chairman said there is a need to make the distinction between Alabo Gideon Ekeuwei as Chairman of the board and Alabo Gideon Ekeuwei as a private individual.
He explained that all actions carried out by him is backed by law and are done in the interest of the board, saying that in his personal capacity he is entitled to engage in any business he deems fit.
He said the served demolition on Baraza Multipurpose Co-operative Society will not affect the entire building but only the pillars located within the right of way, and which encroaches on the road.
Ekuewei added that the approval for the demolition was made on the basis of the design of the city and other submittals presented to the board.
On the issuance of the removal notice on Baraza property, he reminded the public that similar notices have been issued to others who contravened the physical development plans of the state as part of routine activities of the board.
He therefore urged those resorting to cheap blackmail, negative public sentiments and character assassination to do the needful and stop peddling falsehood.
The Chairman advised those aggrieved to follow due process to seek redress in all matters relating to the enforcement of guidelines and execution of sanctions.
He said the board will not relent in its responsibility to enforce the laws as it should be, calling on Bayelsans to always follow the right procedures when erecting structures.
He noted that the board was not trying to witch hunt any individual or organization but only ensured that the laws guiding the development of the state are strictly adhered to.