FCTA: Vandals to Serve Jail Term in States of Origin

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• To remove football pitches along Airport Road

By Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja

The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA)  has said offenders found guilty at the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) Mobile Court for vandalising facilities along Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja will be referred to their state of origin to serve the jail term.

The threat was issued by the Acting Coordinator of Abuja Metropolitan Management Council (AMMC), Hajia Safia Umar, at a joint media interaction with AEPB Acting Director, Mrs. Omolola Olanipekun, to explain measures to make the Airport Road attractive to international tourists. AEPB and AMMC are the two main FCTA parastatals responsible for urban management.

 Umar said defaulters, including those caught breaking pedestrian barricades along the median, to cross to the other side of the road, would be prosecuted.

“Whoever is found breaking the fence to cross the road will be prosecuted at AEPB Mobile court and if sentenced, will be sent to his state of origin to serve his jail term. That measure will serve as a deterrent because people don’t want to be disgraced in their community,’’ Umar said.

She stressed that proper surveillance of the Airport Road would be ensured with the provision of generator sets to power the street lights, while cabins manned by guards equipped with bikes, would go round at 200 meters apart at night to prevent the facilities from being vandalised. Two-three levels of trees will also be planted along the road corridor and the median to prevent people from walking across the road.

Umar similarly disclosed that the authority would remove all football pitches that are within the several interchanges along airport road, while all billboards not within the standards of the Development Control Unit of AMMC would be removed.

Instead of advertisements, directional signage would be tagged along the bridges.

She said many of the villages along the road would be barricaded to prevent them from encroaching to the road, while vehicles and cycles would be prevented by the Transport Secretariat, Vehicles Inspection Unit (VIO) and Task Force from parking along the road.

‘’The essence is to make Abuja, Africa’s only city with a master-plan a smart city. We want it to be a city Africans can be proud of in the mould of London, New York and Dubai.’’