Home Abuja Metro FCTA demolishes shanties under Abuja bridges, sends squatters packing

FCTA demolishes shanties under Abuja bridges, sends squatters packing

The City Management Team of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) on Tuesday began demolition of shanties built under bridges by illegal squatters.

The team, supported by security personnel, also sent the squatters packing as part of efforts to strengthen security measures to secure the lives and properties of residents.

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Mr Mukhtar Galadima, Director, of Development Control, who led the team, said the exercise was a follow-up to sensitisation of the squatters who were asked to vacate the areas or be forcefully removed.

Galadima, who was represented by Mr Hassan Ogbole, Deputy Director, Monitoring and Enforcement, Development Control, FCTA, explained that the exercise was in response to the FCT minister’s directives that the areas should be cleaned up.

According to him, the directive stemmed from security concerns around and under bridges in the FCT.

“We went out in January to enlighten the illegal squatters, who are taking refuge in the area on the security threats their habitation poses to residents in the area and asked them to vacate the areas.

“We are here as a follow up to that task of cleaning up the shanties and other nuisance within and around subways and under bridges in the capital city.”

He said the exercise, which began with the clean-up of the bridge by Abia House, along Ahmadu Bello Way, would cover 10 more bridges across the city.

To ensure that the squatters did not return to the area, the director said the City Management Team consulted relevant stakeholders and departments on the best way to use of the spaces recovered from squatters.

The director said the stakeholders recommended that the operator of the park in the area should take over the management of the under bridge.

“Gone are the days where spaces are recovered, and they are not being put to good use.

“Therefore, we have proposed, subject to the approval of the FCT Minister, to hand over the spaces under the bridges to park managers to manage them and put them to good use,” he said.

Galadima expressed concern that some of the pillars of the bridges have been exposed to erosion and other engineering challenges due to the activities of the squatters and scavengers.

He said that a provision was made for scavengers and scrap collectors at Wasa layout, adding that the FCT Administration would organize and profile them with a view to relocating them to the area.

“We certainly don’t want them scattered all over the place,” he said.

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