By Salisu Sani-Idris
Abuja, Aug. 17, 2022 (NAN) The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) says it has embarked on mass elimination of shanties, regular raiding and clearing of hideouts harbouring criminals and hoodlums in the territory.
Amb. Abu Mohammed, the Senior Special Assistant to the FCT Minister on Security Matters, told Newsmen on Wednesday in Abuja that most of the shanties “are safe havens for miscreants, armed robbers, kidnappers and drug dealers’’.
“There are also security threats and environmental hazards as open defecation together with other breaches of sanitation laws coupled with the current security situation, the menace of shanties in the FCT are no longer going to be tolerated at all.
“Same applies to abandoned buildings and bushy undeveloped plots, particularly in built up areas. A ministerial taskforce charged with that responsibility conducts its activities almost on daily basis.
“This has brought sanity in many parts of the territory,” he said.
Mohammed said that the administration was also curtailing the menace of “okada’’ riders in the city, adding “the ban on them in the municipality introduced in 2006 is still in force’’.
The minister’s aide said that the enforcement of the ban was still on and thousands of motor cycles seized were being crushed quarterly.
“You are aware that most of the riders are nuisance, causing accidents here and there, and it is the popular means of transportation for bandits and armed robbers.
“Miscreants also use it to snatch bags and other valuable from commuters.”
Similarly, Mohammed said that the administration had ensured the removal of scavengers otherwise known as ‘Baban Bola’ from the streets of the FCT.
“Due to public outcry on the increasing activities of scavengers and the menace of vandalism and theft of private and public property, including critical national infrastructure, Baba Bola has been outlawed in the FCT.
“It was as a result of these efforts that the FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Bello directed all relevant Secretariat Departments and Agencies (SDAs) to work jointly and close down identified scrap markets (Panteka) where the transmission lines and other stolen infrastructure are sold.
“Also, consideration is being given to stemming the demand side of the scavenging activities by targeting the end users. It is strongly believed that if the end users are identified and punished, it will curtail the rampant cases of vandalising critical national assets,” he said.
Also, Mr Ikharo Attah, the Senior Special Assistant on Monitoring Inspection and Enforcement to the FCT Minister, said the administration discovered that the shanties were heavily harbouring criminals leaving the government with no other choice than to come and clear them.
Attah Ikharo said the number of shanties in some parts of the city was worrisome and the administration would not relent it efforts to rid the city of shanties. (NAN)