Authority of the Nigerian Federal Capital Territory Administration FCTA
, on Sunday, says the ongoing clean-up, demolition of shanties, and illegal structures in the territory is done with human face and adherence to rules of engagement.
The Chairman, FCTA Ministerial Taskforce on City Sanitation, Mr. Ikharo Attah, stated this while responding to questions from journalists in Abuja, adding that the mandate of the TASKFORCE is to rid the territory of contravention given the increasing rate of shanties and illegal structures on road corridors.
Attah explained that the FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Bello, had always insisted that despite the illegalities observed, a high level of engagement with critical stakeholders should be held at all levels before the demolition exercise.
“That for me is the best of a human face that you can get around.
“All that we have been doing as regards the clean-up, removal of shanties and illegal structures in the FCT as an administration, we are doing it with a total human face.
“We carried out all the cleanup or demolition as you call it with strong empathy because we understand that we are also part of humanity.
“When people commit illegality and when the time of clean up comes the FCT Minister will tell you yes these things are illegal they have to go but we are human please engage and discuss with the people.
“The few ones you know you can make arrangements do, the ones you know nothing can be done tell them expressly, talk to the local Chiefs and natives to make them understand that it is actually necessary,” he said.
He said that the task force gave more than four months clean-up a notice to the Mpape community, dialogued, and engaged them for some time before the commencement of the exercise.
He also said that the task force engaged some other areas like the city center, saying “in fact, we have engaged people a lot some of the discussion is still going on which I cannot disclose here.
He added that “The Minister insists that in all what we do, engagements with critical stakeholders must be carried out so that we can get their buy-in.
“So, I believe what we exhibited is absolute with a strong and total human face. It is just that when we do all of this the engagement is not being reported in the media.
“The dialogues and meetings were not in the media, so people will not know what we are doing. But I will tell you clearly that all the clean-up we have carried out were done with total human face.
He said that the delay in the clean-up was due to the series of negotiations and meetings with critical stakeholders.
According to Attah, the minister believes that we are part of humanity and we must as he directed engage with critical stakeholders on all of this and ensure that we do it with absolute human face.
“When we go out to clear illegal structures, if you will observed we allowed people that we gave several months of notice but disobey, one hour to evacuate their properties”, he said.