Tuesday, July 17, 2012

home wrecking in Makoko

Sahara Reporters on the government-led demolition drive in Makoko, the lagoonside squatter community in Lagos. To all the commenters on the SR site who say it's a good thing because of degraded conditions there: whatever happened to consultation, to working with the population, to understanding that no matter how difficult living conditions might be, these are people's homes, where they have put down roots, where they have all their social capital. Kicking people out, demolishing what they have spent their meager savings building, is not humanitarian and not democratic. It's inhuman and totalitarian.

Governor Babatunde Fashola has a history of this. He wants to change Lagos in hurry--but destroying street markets and demolishing people's homes with no due process and no warning and no attempt to work with the citizens to make their lives and living conditions better is heartless--and, I'd bet, unconstitutional.

(praise be to Chika for the link!]

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