By Muhammad Abdullahi, Abuja
Petty traders at Zuba, a suburb of Abuja were visibly angry Tuesday, as FCT Ministerial Task Team on City Sanitation dismantled illegal motor parks and shanties in the area.
Officials of the team led by its chairman, Ikharo Attah, in the wee hours of the day stormed the popular Dankogi area on Zuba-Kaduna expressway and demolished the illegal motor parks which the traders operate in makeshifts, constituting security threat to the people.
Fielding questions from journalists after the exercise tagged ‘clean up’, the chairman said removing the structures was in line with the directives of the minister of the FCT, Malam Muhammad Bello to maintain sanity in the city.
Attah explained that the exercise followed the Minister’s directives on the need to reclaim the inter-change in Zuba being abused by traders and motorists.
He regretted that the inter-change has been taken over by shanties in the name of trading, causing grilock and nuisance.
The chairman stated that, “the minister is not comfortable with the abuse of the plan of the inter-change which is supposed to be green but is converted into a transport hub that is gradually becoming a shanty and criminals’ den, in addition to being a plantain market.
“We are removing the illegal structures to reclaim Zuba because some criminals are coming to the spot, so the exercise today is multi-dimensional, one is to reclaim the Zuba inter-change, two is to remove shanties where criminals hide, three is to free traffic coming from Kubwa-Dei-Dei axis that connect Zuba and Zuma rock axis on Abuja-Kaduna express way.
“There is a market for the traders, so they should move in, not selling on the road, they feel okay to sell on the road because it provides quick market for them, we are discouraging that by appealing to them to relocate and leave the road inter-change, or corridor” he said.
On sustaining the exercise, Hassan Ogbole of the Department of Development Control, said after the clean up, the Department of Parks and Recreation is expected to take over the area for proper management.
“We have done our part, it is left for the Department of Parks and Recreation to take over the management of the area; it is either they come in as a department, or hand it over to a contractor that will manage it”