FCTA pulls down structures in GSM village
The Federal Capital Territory Administration, FCTA, through the Development Control Department, last week, pulled down clusters of makeshift structures used for leisure near the GSM village, in Wuse Zone 1.
Our correspondent learnt that the operation which was executed by officials of Development Control officials backed by armed mobile policemen and military personnel, stormed the area and dismantled the structures operated by Leisure Parks, for purportedly constituting nuisance along the Abuja Rail corridor.
A visit to the area revealed that operators and shop owners managed to salvage whatever valuables left inside some of the demolished structures.
Some of the affected operators decried that government bulldozers arrived with less than 24-hour notice, thereby throwing them into state of despair, as they could only salvage bits of their property.
One of the park operators, Mr. James Timi, alleged that the officials only visited the area on Monday to mark the structures for demolition, stressing that officials of the Department specifically urged the operators to vacate the premises within 24 hours.
He maintained that no adequate prior notice or explanation was offered by the government officials for the exercise.
"I want to know the reason for the demolition before I decide what next step to take. This is very devastating. They didn't even allow us the 24-hour notice they issued.
"Meanwhile, we have a subsisting court order against any such action. Yet, the officials who came for the demolition refused to listen to us. We tried showing them copies of the court order but they refused to look at it but went ahead with their action. This is very bad of government officials," he stressed.
Meanwhile, when contacted, the spokesman of the Development Control, Larry James, said the exercise was part of ongoing removal of structures along the Abuja railway corridors, in preparatory for its takeoff.
According to him, prior to the exercise, there was adequate notice and sensitization by relevant authorities, as the government does its work with human face.
He said they started last year and that they would continue till the corridors are cleared, to pave way for the speedy completion and operation of the rail project.