Sunday, March 3, 2024

Pandemonium as FCTA shuts Dutse-Alhaji market

The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) on Tuesday closed the popular Oloye Olajumoke Modern Market in Dutse-Alhaji, Bwari area council, over violence between some traders and officials of environmental department of the council.

Also, about 25 persons were believed to have been arrested by the police following the incident in the area.

The Nation gathered that trouble started when some officials of the Environmental Department of Bwari area council and the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB), who were involved in the cleaning exercise and removal of illegal structures and attachments in the market, commenced work.

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Speaking with newsmen after closing down the market, the chairman of the Ministerial Task Team on Traffic Management in the FCT, Ikharo Attah, explained that during the cleaning exercise, some persons got angry and attacked the environmental officials burning down their office outlet in the area.

Attah revealed that based on the incident, the minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Malam Muhammad Bello, in collaboration with the chairman of Bwari area council, John Gabaya, have endorsed the immediate closure of the market until further notice.

He stated that the market would remain closed until when the FCT minister and the Bwari area council chairman must satisfy that the market is safe for traders and customers before it would be reopened, adding that a fact-finding committee would be set up to unravel the circumstances surrounding the incident.

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The Secretary of Bwari Area Council, Kadanya Eli Peter, said that some officials of the environmental department was actually injured during the violence, while others were seriously petted during the incident.

Peter explained that the cleaning exercise started last week following a visit to the market by the FCT minister, who expressed worry over the poor sanitary state of the market, and ordered for a cleanup exercise.

He revealed that the occupants of the illegal structures and attachments were given five days quit notice before the commencement of the removal exercise, which entered its second day on Tuesday.

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