Written by Austine ELEMUE

FCT, Niger seek solution to boundary problem

Niger State governor, Alhaji Sani Bello, has called on the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to forget 2019 presidential elections, as he stressed that there was no vacancy in the Presidential Villa. 

The governor, who made the call Thursday when he paid a courtesy visit to the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Malam Muhammad Bello, in Abuja, also stressed that the 2019 general election is a done deal. 

“There is no vacancy in 2019, the President is delivered already. The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, can speak what they want to speak, it is democracy. It is done,” he said.

The governor on the reason for his visit stated: “for sometime now, we have been having problems with regards to boundaries and I think it is time for us to address it once and for all. We had a very good meeting and hopefully the matter, that is, the boundary issues between Niger state and the FCT will be resolved”. 

Also responding to a question on how his government has been able to tackle recurrent cases of banditry around his state, he said: “we did a lot to manage it, I can’t go into details now, but we are on top of it, and it’s quite challenging, but we thank God that we have been able to bring it to the barest minimum at the moment so the security issue within the state is very calm now”.   

Minister of the FCT, Malam Muhammad Bello, has called for quick resolution on the boundary issues between the FCT and Niger State, saying that all Nigerians were happy and thankful to the state for ceding large portion of its land for creation of the nation’s capital. 

Speaking to journalists after a closed door meeting, the minister said it was fruitful. 

The minister said: “we discussed basically three issues -we discussed the issue of the boundary, which already there is an existing boundary committee between the two states (FCT and Niger State), which we all agreed that the committee will have to conclude its work as soon as possible. 

“We also discussed about the need to handle environmental pollution, especially in the villages and cities around the boundary areas, and that of course arose because of population explosion, and we tasked all the relevant officials to really continue to work and work more, and to also ensure that this is made at community level because government cannot continue to intervene to do what ordinarily is supposed to be a community activity. 

“And finally, of course, we also acknowledged the fact that a lot of work is been done now at the Federal Ministry of Finance level to ensure that residents of the boundary city, towns that are working in the FCT are taxed, particularly to ensure that those who are on salaries pay their taxes to places where they reside. That is what the law is, and that revenue will be used by the councils." 

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