AEPB demolishes illegal markets to curb insecurity in FCT 

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Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) on Saturday in Abuja demolished all illegal markets in Area 11 and the Federal Secretariat to curb the incessant insecurity faced by residents.

Mr Osi Braimah, Director AEPB said this after the demolition of all the shanty stores built in a market at Area 11 popularly called COVID-19 market and the shanties built around the Federal Secretariat.null

Braimah said that the government had made provisions for sites where petty trading could be carried out but the traders have refused to comply.

“For security purposes it is not good to have the point of sale (POS) operators all over the places. We advise people to do things in designated places to forestall insecurity issues.

“For example, the POS operators have been told to move into plazas so as not to have POS canopies all over the expressways. This is even better for our people if the POS operators are in the plazas everyone will know them.

“This is an ongoing exercise by various agencies of the FCT. AEPB has been given marching order by the FCT Minister, Nyesom Wike to clear all shanties, illegal markets and squatter camps in the FCT,” he said.

The director said that the Federal Secretariat portion used as an illegal market is a road corridor taken over by petty traders and expressed optimism that the FCT administration would soon commence the project to forestall the return of the traders.

“The massive commencement of road projects within the FCT will soon take care of the problems of shanties in the areas.

“Part of the problems we have in the FCT is the inability of people developing their plots after they acquire them.

“Part of the problems that we need to overcome is for people to develop their plots quickly, clean them and use them for the purposes they are meant for and not leave them vacant,” Braimah appealed.null

Similarly, KaKa Bello, Deputy Director Monitoring and Enforcement Department, AEPB said the demolition was a normal routine duty carried out by the board to clean the city.

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Bello said that the Area 11 market was carved to help residents within the area during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“After the COVID-19 pandemic the traders were expected to go back to Garki Market where most of them have shops but unfortunately this is two years after, most of them have refused to go back.

“Things that were not approved to be sold at the market are now being sold there to constitute nuisance to the area, the market was meant to take care of only groceries.

“The environment here is unhealthy, we have given them notice of vacation before now and this is the final notice. By the time we come back on Oct. 21 we will roll the machines to finally break the place down,” he warned.null

Bello said that the market is a rail corridor and a “park and pay” place would soon be developed to forestall a reoccurrence settlement by illegal occupants.