Written by Sarah NEGEDU

140 buildings in Guzape face demolition this week

Not less than 140 illegal structures built on service corridors in Guzape district of Abuja, have been marked for demolition, the Department of Development Control has disclosed.

The structures located in Kuruduma II and Kpaduma II communities in Guzape, will be pulled down this week following the expiration of the ultimatum given occupants of the buildings.

Speaking to journalists after inspecting the structures, the Chief Town Planning Officer, Development Control Department, Thompson Hope, explained that the affected structures had been marked and their occupants notified about the impending demolition exercise.

Hope said that the department had earlier issued seven days ultimatum to the inhabitants of the affected illegal structures in the area, adding that as soon as the ultimatum expires, demolition would begin immediately.

He said that the development control had marked some of the illegal structures for demolition as far back as three years ago, with several sensitise campaign to the indigenous communities to ensure they abide by the FCTA regulations on land allocation.

According to him, the indigenous communities and villages have expanded beyond the indigenous settlement. He said that the department held several meetings with the leaders of the indigenous communities on the need for them to stop selling plots of land to the people.

“We have severally warned the indigenous communities including the local chiefs that all the lands in FCT is vested within the confine of the FCT Minister and that they should desist from selling land. But because some people are so desperate and desirous to build thinking that before government takes action they will either make one or two profits out of it.

“These illegal structures are already built on service corridors where plot allottees are desirous to develop their properties but because of this illegal development along the corridor they cannot take possession of their plots.

“Recently, the FCTA has sent signals to plot allottees to take possession of their plots else they stand a chance of been revoke and that has put us under enormous pressure as a department. By our estimate, we have about 140 illegal structures on this corridors.

“We have given them 7 days ultimatum and hopefully by the expiration of the ultimatum, we are coming to demolish all the illegal structures. The notice was given to them on Monday Nov. 18 and it will expire by Monday Nov. 25. Hopefully on Tuesday, we will come with our machines to demolish them, he said.

On the issue of compensation to the owners of the illegal structures, Hope said compensation was a policy issue that can only be handled by the Minister.

The areas marked for demolition are on Bola Tinubu Close, connecting Kuruduma II, behind INEC quarters, and Kpaduma II, all in Guzape district.

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