FCTA adopts new ways to remove illegal structures

Hudu Yakubu, Abuja

Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has adopted new approach in the removal of illegal structures in the city to give exercise a human face

The FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello Minister stated this while receiving a delegation from the National Human Rights Commission, led by its Executive Secretary, Professor Bem Angwe, in Abuja.

Malam Bello explained that the Administration abandoned its previous style of demolishing illegal structures in the FCT to enable affected residents salvage any useful material in the process.

He said that, the owners of such property are duly carried along in the process and allowing them to carry out the exercise to enable them retrieve some useful material that can be taken away, thereby reducing the pains.

The Minister noted that the approach has really paid off because it has encouraged understanding and reduced lots of friction.

He expressed appreciation for the role the National Human Rights Commission had played for the FCT Administration to adopt the new procedure.

The Minister described the Commission as a reputable organisation that tells people when they are wrong irrespective of their position.

Malam Bello also urged the Rights Commission to do more in terms of enlightenment of FCT residents on the need to be law abiding and to carry out their activities in a manner as to not infringe on the rights of other residents of the Territory.

Malam Bello lamented that “ an incident where the FCT Development Control Department was dragged to the Commission in the course of enforcing Development Control laws, and the Commission agreed that although the Department was on the right side of the law, it needed to apply more human face and make sure Nigerians appreciate why they are taking those actions.

According to him, “several places we go now, we show them the law, tell them their infringement and we say to them, we will not come and remove anything. You do it yourself; salvage what can be salvaged and at the end of the day, everybody is the better off for it. You are able to not waste things that ordinarily could have been used elsewhere”.

Malam Bello however expressed concern over the lingering Wuye Market controversy, saying that the Administration desires to have a city that is vibrant with economic activities and the attendant employment opportunities it could provide.

Speaking earlier, the Executive Secretary/Chief Executive Officer of the National Human Rights Commission, Professor Bem Angwe said that the National Human Rights Commission is one of the best legacies of the Military rule in Nigeria.

He promised to continue to partner with the FCT Administration in the overall interest of Nigerians, particularly those residents in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.