A group, Citizens’ Right Advocate, has faulted the demolition of Diamond Acres Estate early this year by the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) saying it was predicated on wrong reasons.
On January 6, 2018, Coordinator of Abuja Metropolitan Management Council (AMMC), Umar Shuaibu and the Director of Development Control, Galadima Muktar, briefed journalists over the 750 illegal shanties and some developed property the FCTA had marked for demolition for violating safety standards.
Specifically, Shuaibu said Diamond Acres Estate was built on Ring Road 4, faulting its owner for refusing to follow due instructions after many development control notices earlier served on him to stop work.
Diamond Acres Estate, with 64 duplex completed buildings was situated in the midst of the ‘Urban Shelter’, ‘AMAC Housing Estate’, and ‘Carlin Concept International Ltd ‘in Kyami District on Airport Road, collectively said to be on Ring Road 4 course way.
While reacting to reasons given by the FCTA for the demolition of Diamond Acres Estate with completed 64 duplex houses, the general secretary of the group, Barr. Austin Uzendu, said the proposed Ring Road 4 project has all along been set aside because of the rock on its course which required to be blasted.
Uzendu said the FCTA was economical with the facts because the “Urban Shelter’’, “AMAC Housing Estate’’, and “Carlin Concept International Ltd” estates were also affected by the proposed Ring Road 4 construction, but have not been demolished.
The group, which said it took time to thoroughly investigate FCTA positions and that of the prime-mover of the estate, said following the law earlier enacted banning the blasting of the hills to preserve ecological or environmental features of the FCT, the proposed road network was discontinued.
“Our findings show that the work was in full gear just as the contractors handling the site were already engaged and settled in lieu of full completion of the constructions aimed at timely delivery to the customer when the stop order was issued.
“Besides, there were glaring indications that the road project proposal was set aside in view of subsisting laws against blasting of the hills to pave way for road project.
“Moreover, the developer genuinely secured title to the land, and obtained relevant documentations before commencing the construction of the estate buildings.
“The law requires acquisition notices in contradistinction to Stop Work Notice, just as no valid acquisition can occur without acquisition notice; and that is the hallmark of this acquisition/demolition,” he said.