Many families have been rendered homeless following the demolition of over 349 structures by the Federal Capital Territory Authority in Lugbe-Across along Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Road in Abuja.
The operation which was carried out by the FCT Ministerial Committee on City Sanitation was tagged “2021 mother of clean-ups,” and accompanied by armed security operatives.
Some of the victims said they were not given adequate notice before the task force mobilised bulldozers to the area and destroyed their properties.
The demolition exercise which started at Lugbe-Across, Lugbe Berger, Car Wash, and Lugbe Zone 5 lasted about seven hours and affected shops and homes in the area.
But the Chairman of the team, Ikharo Attah, who supervised the demolition exercise explained that the operation was part of routine efforts on the Airport Road corridor, which he claimed was necessary to keep the nation’s capital, Abuja, clean.
He added that Usman Nga-Kupi, the Chief of Garki, who was also in the entourage, bemoaned the fact that most of the spaces where homeowners should park their automobiles along the fence line had been converted to business centres.
He further stated that the FCT Administration had fenced the organic settlement for the residents waiting for resettlement but regretted that the plan had been contravened by those within the area, which violates the Abuja Master Plan.
He said, “The people have turned the fence line to a motor park, where car owners park and pay N1,000 on a daily basis.
“In line with town planning rules and to keep the city clean and safe, we are not going to be deterred. This comprehensive clean-up shows that FCT Administration is committed to keeping the city clean.
“One of the key issues is to keep to the acceptable standards; if you are driving in through the Airport Road, what you see is not befitting. Abuja Environmental Protection Board is doing well by evacuating the heavy waste, there are dumpsites at the back of the villages but some still come to the front to dump waste.”
Attah also explained that the exercise was to ensure that Abuja, especially along the Airport Road is maintained in line with the best practices of orderliness and sanitation.