The Rule of Law and Accountability Advocacy Centre, RULAAC has commended the Divisional Police Officer, DPO of the Gowon Estate Police Division, Moshalashi, Lagos State, Mr. Suleiman Kabir for maintaining professional standards in mediating over a case between landlord and tenant in the Division.
RULAAC, in a statement signed by its Executive Director, Mr. Okechukwu Nwanguma on Monday recalled that case was reported to the Division last week by a landlord against his tenant.
According to the statement, “The landlord had issued a quit notice to the said tenant who lives with his wife, two children and a relative. The tenant revealed that the landlord’s grouse was that his (the tenant’s) wife was not patronizing his (the landlord’s) wife who sales assorted goods in her shop in front of the house.
“The landlord therefore, asked him to quit and cut him off from water supply. They had to be going outside to buy water.
“The tenant, a Keke driver, said he went to plead with the landlord to reconsider his decision, but he stood his ground because his wife insisted the tenant must leave.
“The tenant begged for time to find another vacant apartment to rent. But the landlord and his family members wanted the tenant to leave even as the quit notice had not been properly served. The tenant made up his mind to leave and was frantically looking for a vacant space to rent.
“The impatient and malicious landlord started locking the tenant out. The tenant returned home from his business one night and the landlord had locked the gate. His plea to the landlord to open the gate for him to drive in his Keke was turned down. He ended up sleeping outside inside his Keke.
“The second day, he came back and again, the gate was locked. He pleaded again but the landlord’s daughter told him that they will not allow him in until he parks out. Unable to go through the inconvenience of sleeping outside inside his Keke again for another night, he broke the padlock and moved in. The landlord’s daughter threatened that he and his family will rot in jail.
“The next day, the landlord went and reported at Gowon Estate Police Division. Officers came and arrested the tenant.
“After hearing both parties, the police blamed the landlord for locking out his tenant and cutting him off water supply, even without a proper quit notice. They got the parties to reach a mutual agreement that the landlord should give the tenant up to the end of August to find an alternative accommodation and move out while the landlord should in the interim, reconnect him to water supply.
“They asked them to go and maintain peace.”
The statement added that contrary to the familiar practice, the police neither detained nor asked for any money from the accused insisting that “this is highly commendable.”
Photo: Mr. Okechukwu Nwanguma, the Executive Director, RULAAC.
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