Following last week’s flood that claimed a family of five in Giri-Kpasere, along Airport road in Gwagwalada Area Council , the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has commenced the demolition of about 102 houses built along water channels in the area.
Deputy director, monitoring and enforcement, department of development control, Garba Kwamkur, explained during the exercise yesterday that the illegal houses had been marked more than one year ago, while the residents were given enough time to vacate the flood plain areas.
Kwamkur maintained that government could not spare the houses anymore, following the recent forecast of more rains and consequential flooding that would affect the area.
He noted that the community, covering about 260 hectares of land was integrated into the Abuja master plan for the development of University of Abuja, Gwagwalada, but some aboriginals and squatters are living there temporarily.
“The university had written to us about the encroachment issue and the settlement that’s due for resettlement has grown beyond it’s boundary”.
“We actually had to discuss it with the village leaders on the need to move away from the flood plain area. FEMA has also predicted that there will be heavy flood this year, so we are doing something like a precautionary measure, that’s why all the buildings along the flood plains will have to go”.
“All contravention notices have been given as far back as last year (2019). No government will sit down and do nothing when the lives of its citizens are being threatened by either flood or any other thing”.
The chief of the community, Mr. Isah Egari, who said he is not opposing the demolition of the houses, pleaded with government to give the residents more time to move out from the affected places.
Egari also called on the demolition team to restrict the bulldozers to the areas closer to the water channels, so as not to impose undue hardship on other residents who were not affected.
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