Golf Club workers threaten slum dwellers
Some residents of communities surrounding the Golf Club in Lumley, Freetown, have alleged that some people believed to be workers of the club have started threatening them with eviction notice on the grounds that the lands they are occupying belong to the club.
These allegations were made by some residents of Bonga Tong and New Life City communities, when our roving reporter visited the areas to investigate the matter.
One of the residents, Mr. Tamba Nyama, who claimed to have established in Bonga Tong since 1987, said they had faced similar threats three years ago that culminated in serious riot.
He said some of the assailants were charged to court with riotous conduct and the situation died down until now that others have again started threatening to remove them from the two communities which they allege belong to the Golf Club.
Mr. Tamba Nyama claimed that both Bonga Tong and New Life City communities were reclaimed from a stream which they banked with stones and gravels before they started erecting buildings.
He added that because of the threats of eviction and rumours of imminent attack on them, they would not sit by and watch but to call on the media for their intervention.
The Chairman of New Life City community, Mr. Michael, who was perturbed by the rumours, claimed that some unscrupulous people who had been in the community for over fifteen years with no plot of land are those behind the threats and rumours.
According to him, “Now that these bad people have been employed by the Golf Club, they are using it as a weapon to intimidate us but we’ll never run away from here.”
Mr. Michael claimed that they legally own the community and documents are there to substantiate their claims to the land just as the Golf Club also has.
When contacted for comments, the Manager of Golf Club Management, Mr. Lansana, denied claims that his workers were threatening to remove the residents of Bonga Tong and New Life City from their communities on the grounds that both communities belong to the Golf Club.
He maintained that he has no knowledge about the allegations and that his management has something else to do instead of embroiling in land issue.
While Bonga Tong and New Life City residents are claiming ownership of their communities, many observers are worried that those areas are vulnerable to flooding during the rains and therefore not good for habitation.
It could be recalled that during the last year flood in the Western Area, both Bonga Tong and New Life City were among the worst hit areas and two persons eventually lost their lives to the flood.
Mr. Michael however assured that they were going to handle the situation before the next raining season to avoid any future flooding.
Many people who were displaced by the flood in the two communities and were allotted new settlement at Mile 6 by the Government have returned to their already battered homes while the Government seems to be giving deaf ears to the dangerous situation until another flooding perhaps takes place in future.
By Abdulai Bangura
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