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Illegal Devt: FCDA Executive Secretary warns of harsh punishment

13th Jul, 2020 | By Richard A. Nduul | ||

Illegal developers in Federal Capital Territory (FCT) who may want to test the resolve of the authorities by disregarding regulations have been warned to halt such actions or find themselves in hot soup. Executive Secretary, Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA), Engr. Umar Gambo Jibrin, sounded the note of warning when he led an inter-departmental technical committee on inspection tour of some parts of the nation's capital city to assess the level of degradation perpetrated through activities of illegal developers.

The FCT Administration (FCTA), the Executive Secretary further warned, will not fold its hands and allow Abuja to deteriorate to the point where there could be a clamour for another relocation of the nation's capital, as happened with Lagos in the early 1970s. He stated that FCTA would do everything to maintain and preserve the city as the nation's pride.

Very significant among abuses by illegal developers were encroachment on rights of way (RoW) for engineering infrastructure such as waterways, sewage and electricity lines as well as road corridors. For instance, it was observed during the inspection that an existing contract for extension of water supply to all districts in the southern axis of the city such as the Abuja Technology Village and all privately-developed estates, had been stalled by an encroachment by Peace Court Estate where some buildings are standing on the RoW of the waterlines along Ring Road II.

The technical committee, which consists of Departments of Engineering Services; Engineering Design & Evaluation (DEDE); Urban and Regional Planning; Development Control; Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB); FCT Water Board; Parks and Recreation; Lands; as well as the Department of Outdoor Advertisement and Signages (DOAS) respectively, also frowned at the activities of illegal car wash outlets and car sales marts which had not only taken over pedestrian walkways but exposed the roads to failure due to use of chemicals and detergents.

To worsen matters, it was noticed that some of these car wash businesses routinely ruptured treated water lines for their source of water supply. However, the inspection also offered each relevant department the opportunity to re-assess its performance and the need for improvement in line with their individual statutory mandate and responsibilities. Also noticed was that some of the areas of concern included waste management and sanitation; clearing of blockages; trimming of over-grown trees and shrubs; patching of potholes; replacement of streetlights bulbs; removal of knocked-down poles, traffic and vehicular control, among others.

A key positive fall-out from the exercise was the ongoing replacement of pedestrian crossing barriers which had commenced on Ring Road 1 (Nnamdi Azikiwe Expressway) to prevent pedestrians from the danger of being knocked down by motorists while crossing the expressway. The top shots at the inspection, led by Engr. Jibrin, encouraged pedestrians instead to use pedestrian bridges provided in the city. Another important development from the city tour was the ongoing rehabilitation of the Idu Train Station Road in readiness for resumption of full train services after COVID-19 lockdown.

The road is being resurfaced, provided with proper drainage, street lights and security fencing. This is being done in realization of the fact that both local and foreign visitors use the road to access the train station and connect the pivotal Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport as well as to Kaduna. The access road to the Gosa dumpsite, which has been in bad shape over the years, was also receiving attention. A contract awarded to China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) as part of the COVID-19 emergency projects, is for the first rigid pavement (concrete road) in Abuja.

Using concrete to construct the Gosa dumpsite access road will ensure durability as asphalt is known to be susceptible to attack by the acidic nature of the site. Besides, the lifespan of concrete is twice that of asphalt, which is between 20 – 25 years. The FCTA, Engr. Jibrin assured, however, welcomes any developer or investor interested in doing genuine business in the city and FCT of necessary technical assistance and process in line with President Muhammadu Buhari's ease of doing business policy and in conformity with the Abuja Master Plan.

News Update

According to the Minister, Sir Ohaa never shied away from difficult situations, a trait which he added he (Minister) found very useful in the running of the affairs of FCTA, adding that the job of Permanent Secretary of the nation's capital's bureaucracy was not an easy one.

Director of Public Health, Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), Dr. Josephine Okechukwu, has counseled residents of the Territory to distance themselves from persons who fail to put on face masks.

Inspector-General of Police, IGP Mohammed Abubarka Adamu, received three operational vehicles donated by Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company Limited to the Nigeria Police Force in support of ongoing efforts at repositioning the Force for optimal performance.

Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) has commended Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) for its efforts in development of basic education in the Territory.


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