1004 Estate, an upper middle class settlement in the heart of Victoria Island, is presently in the eye of the storm with the management of the estate and a few aggrieved residents disagreeing with each other on some contractual obligations and privileges.
The aggrieved residents under the aegis of 1004 Estates Homes Owners and Residents Association (1004HORA) have made several allegations against the estate management known as 1004 Estates Limited which has Samuel Ukpong as Managing Director.
A media report in Lagos recently quoted the association as alleging, among other things, that the “estate has been mismanaged as a result of bad management and there are no transparency, accountability, and fairness in the treatment of residents and owners of the place who had paid money to acquire it”.
In its reaction, the estate management, in a statement obtained by BusinessDay, dismissed the association as an illegal entity, explaining that without the knowledge and consent or election by either the other entitled 1062 sub-lessees and 1004 Estates Limited, only 8 individuals surreptitiously incorporated 1004HORA for their own private interests and agenda.
According to the statement, the estate’s management agreement, which is for 93 years initially, gives exclusive management rights on the estate to 1004 Estates Limited, adding that the sublease agreement on the estate has also incorporated an official rules and regulations for a “1004 Housing Estate Home Owners Association (1004 HEHOA) which was set up for purposes of good neighbourliness, information and interaction with the sub-lessees and residents.
“Contrary to all these contractual terms, these eight individuals set up 1004HORA with a game plan to privately take over the management of the estate as contained in their articles for private benefit. They then commenced making illegal and illegitimate demands on 1004 Estates Limited which were all rejected and they have sought to impose ridiculous service rates on the tenants of the other non-resident sublessee’s in order to orchestrate a crisis”, the management pointed out. “All their demands lack any legal backing as the group has no legal relationship with 1004 Estates Limited and has sought to utilise propaganda , violence and intimidation to achieve its overreaching ambitions through blackmail and salacious claims without any basis”, they stated.
On the allegation of high service charges in the estate, the management said the “the facts speak for themselves”, explaining that “1004 estates has the lowest service charge in the whole of Victoria Island, Ikoyi, Oniru and Lekki. Our rate of N658,000 per annum (about N52,000 monthly) is the reason for the high occupancy levels on the estate and several individuals and companies are not foolish as they have shopped around before settling for this estate and they get the same quality of 24-hour services that other buildings will normally charge over N1 million minimum per annum for”.
Continuing, the management noted that “this group’s leadership which is made up of the less endowed residents have continuously sought to impose ridiculous service charges as low as N15,000 monthly on the estate . This amount cannot even pay a driver’s monthly wage and they expect it to cover janitors, security men, technicians, repairs on lifts and power, sewage and water treatment plants, swimming pools , roads and drainage maintenance, gardening , common area lighting ,fumigation and our other numerous services”. The management reasoned that the aim of the illegal association was to cripple them by starving them of fund, saying, “it is so clear what they negatively hope to achieve by trying to decree that service charges should be reduced to N15,000 monthly, which all the sub-lessees and residents have rejected as not making any sense for a flat in Victoria Island and are therefore paying the actual service charge fixed by the company for 2014 .
This group has done everything to cripple the management financially and it has been God and frugal management of the payments by many of the responsible expatriates and Nigerian residents who honour their obligations that have ensured that we survive their plot to their utter disbelief”.