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FCTA demolishes 350 houses near Abuja airport

By Azimazi Momoh Jimoh, Abuja
08 April 2022   |   2:44 am
No fewer than 350 houses have been demolished in a densely-populated Bassa-Jiwa village, near Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC)

[files] Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport (NAIA), Abuja. Photo: WIKIMEDIA

No fewer than 350 houses have been demolished in a densely-populated Bassa-Jiwa village, near Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC) of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

Most of the demolished structures were residential buildings, shanties and kiosks on the Right of Way (RoW), under bridge and other unauthorised places.

Officials of the FCT Administration’s Task team on City Sanitation, accompanied by a team of security personnel, stormed and cleared the said structures, for allegedly defacing the area and posing a serious security threat.

Director, Development Control Department, Murkhtar Galadima, said the structures removed were part of the 500 uncontrolled developments marked for demolition in the area.

On whether adequate notice was given before the exercise, Galadima said: “Before marking the structures, we came for sensitisation. Thereafter, we removed them.

“It is part of our regular exercise to sanitise the city, and in furtherance of the Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport expansion project being awarded by the Federal Executive Council (FEC). We are to clear all these uncontrolled developments before the commencement of the project. We are coming to continue with the marking and removals.”

Similarly, the Senior Special Assistant on Monitoring, Inspection and Enforcement to the FCT Minister, Ikharo Attah, noted that the area had a multiple level of illegality, as under the main train bridge connecting the Nnamdi Azikiwe Int’l Airport and the whole community are full of shanties, posing a security threat.

“We will keep coming back here, because the FCT Minister gave us a strong marching order to actually purge all communities along the Bill Clinton Drive connecting road and several others around the city, to ensure that all shanties are cleared,” he stressed.

Chief of Bassa-Jiwa, Dauda Gimba, said: “It is for our good. The removal of the batches under the bridge and along the road have opened up the area and brought back sanity.

“Though the exercise also affected me, as they demolished my structures and that of my secretary. But I still thank God that they came and notified us, and we worked together with them to ensure compliance.