he Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) on Monday in Abuja issued 24-hour ultimatum to illegal traders at Kubwa village Market to quit.
The order followed the recent fire outbreak that claimed six lives.
Acting Director Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) Kaka Ali issued the ultimatum and urged owners of illegal shops and those encroaching on the major corridors and undesignated places around the market to vacate the premises.
Ali disclosed that the FCT Administration had concluded plans to begin massive demolition of illegal structures causing obstructions in the market and the area.
The director explained that all structures that fell within the non-regulated areas for trading would be demolished by the FCT Department of Development Control.
“We are here to sanitise the market and environs following the recent incident of fire outbreak caused by explosion of an illegal Kerosine tank depot in the area.
“We are trying to enlighten them on the dangers of selling within or around the market or within residential areas, which are completely forbidden and there are specific areas for selling such products.
“We have spoken with the market managers on the need to sanitise and put all things in order,” Ali said.
Earlier, the Director, FCT Department of Development Control, Mr Garba Kwamkur, explained that the department received a matching order from the FCT Minister in view of the ugly incident that happened on Nov. 5.
“In and around the market are residential buildings, but people have resorted to breaking their windows and doors, turning those houses to commercial, thereby making everywhere to be rowdy.
“We can’t allow that to continue, that’s why we are here to insist on what the FCT Master Plan says.
“We have given them 24- hour ultimatum to revert to what they were originally meant for. We insist on the restoration of Kubwa Master Plan, because Kubwa, being a satellite town of Abuja, has a plan.”
Also, Mr Ikharo Attah, Chairman of the FCT Ministerial Taskforce on City Sanitation, disclosed that there were old abatement notices served by relevant agency on most of the affected structures.
Attah added that in 2020 the taskforce cleared obstructing structures in the area.
“We cleared that particular place, but within the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown, the people returned to the same spot where the disaster happened.
“Now, with the support of the FCT Minister and Directors of AEPB and Development Control Department, as well as joint team of security personnel, we are going to purge and purify the entire neighbourhood of the NYSC area in Kubwa, in order to remove all illegalities.
“We are ready to commerce removal action, we have told them that we have given you demolition notices as Development Control Department and AEPB issued them notices almost six years ago.
“We have no option but to give them 24 hours within which to vacate the affected structures,” Attah stressed.