Written by Austine ELEMUE

Centenary City is irrevocable, says Bello

The Federal Capital Territory Administration, FCTA, has declared that the request made by the developers of Centenary City project to revoke the agreement between the Centenary City Plc and administration is untenable and unrealistic. 

FCT minister, Malam Muhammad Bello, made this declaration last week at the National Assembly during the public hearing on the Centenary City project by the Senate Committee on FCT. 

Bello revealed that the Centenary City Plc wrote the FCTA requesting for the revocation of a valid development agreement which was duly executed by the two parties as a precondition to access the over 1, 200 hectares of land for the development of the city. 

His words: “Frankly speaking, the Centenary City Plc is seeking to operate a parallel authority within the FCT. If not, how do you explain a situation where by the company is asking for the cancelation of the agreement between us and them only to enforce a third party agreement signed between them and another government agency." 

He maintained that the project was a unique and well-conceived idea which the administration is proud to be part of, insisting however, that the agreement clearly spelt out the obligations of each party in the project. 

The minister said the arrangement which the company is trying to implement was reached between it and the Nigerian Export Processing Zones Authority, NEPZA, which was signed after the company had earlier entered into a pact with the FCTA which qualified it to embark on the project. 

He said the free trade zone status which the company is seeking to enforce did form part of the agreement between it and the FCT Administration. 

Bello, therefore, insisted that the administration cannot allow another set of laws to regulate any part of the territory, stressing that the matter has been forwarded to the office of the Attorney General of the Federation for legal advice on whether it is proper to have an entity within the Federal Capital Territory operating outside the FCTA laws. 

Speaking earlier, chairman of the committee, Senator Dino Melaye, told the gathering that the meeting was called in order to identify the challenges that have hindered the smooth implementation of the Centenary City project. 

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