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Lagos-Calabar highway: Six years of hard work demolished in six hours, Landmark laments

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Lagos-Calabar highway: Six years of hard work demolished in six hours, Landmark laments

Landmark Africa has decried the demolition of a part of its Landmark Beach on Victoria Island, Lagos to give way to the Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway, noting that what took it siz years to build was demolished in six hours.

The demolition happened on through last week and yesterday, Monday, despite the outcry of many about the potential jobs and means of livelihood that will be lost.

Some have also questioned the rationale behind the rerouting of the highway from its original route to the Landmark beach front.

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Images from the demolition showed that structures erected along the coastline including cabanas, football turf, and many others were pulled down. Breeze Beach Club, located at the centre was also pulled down.

Original alignment for the Lagos-Calabar coastal highway in red. New alignment that cuts into Landmark Beach in yellow. Credit: Laila Johnson-Salami, Arise TV

A post on X from Landmark Africa, the parent company of the beach, in reaction to the exercise, said, “What we built in six years was destroyed in six hours”, alluding to their investment believed to be around $200m that has been turned to ruins. They, however, promised to be back.

Recall that Landmark owner, Paul Onwuanibe, had earlier pleaded that the government return the construction of the coastal road to the original alignment before it was moved to the path of the beachfront.

He said the original plan will not only save businesses that will be destroyed as a result of the revised plan, but also save money and manpower for the government.

“The original alignment of the coastal road was Water Corporation Road. I mean, you had the picture on your screen, and it showed quite clearly the Water Corporation Road, the two feeder lanes, and then the medium that was meant to house it.

Lagos-Calabar highway: Six years of hard work demolished in six hours, Landmark laments

Landmark beach

“Then there’s Landmark, and there’s the beach, and there’s the sea. The alignment was changed from Water Corporation Road… so instead of it running on the land side of Landmark, it’s going to run on the beach side of Landmark,” he told Arise TV.

Meanwhile, the Minister of Works, Dave Umahi, while defending the demolition noted that the move was necessary considering the landmark centre was located on the Federal Government’s Right-of-Way.

The minister had earlier assured that with the design of the coastal highway project, only 50 metres of the shoreline and a few shanties will be removed while “permanent structures” will be left intact.

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