Residents of Zhidu Village, off Airport Road in Abuja today, took to the streets to protest against the planned demolition of their homes by the Federal Housing Authority (FHA).
The FHA had earlier announced plans to demolish over 1500 homes in Zhidu Village and its surrounding areas.
The residents say the action does not include providing compensation or resettling them.
According to them, the FHA’s unilateral decision ”blatantly violates constitutional rights, disregards their welfare as citizens, and tarnishes Nigeria’s global reputation.”
They called on the FHA to halt the plans and engage in fair negotiations for compensation and resettlement, as initially promised.
Speaking on behalf of the residents, Apostle Prosper E. Eromosele,
Chairman Zhidu All Property Owners Association, called on President Bola Tinubu to compel the FHA to compensate them.
His words: ”Our gathering here today is to cry out to the world and especially to our Mr President His Excellency Senator Ahmed Bola Tinubu of FHA plans to demolish our homes in the above-mentioned villages without following the initial promise of compensation, integration or relocation.
”The Federal Housing Authority’s decision to displace thousands of people and demolish over 1500 already habited houses without adequate resettlement or compensation is a gross violation of human rights and must be stopped immediately.
”The FHA is violating the Nigerian Constitution, which guarantees the right to fair compensation for those who the government displaces. This is not only illegal, but it is also deeply immoral.
”The affected people who are faced with this sad reality from the FHA – are among the poorest and most vulnerable in Nigerian society, especially in the FCT.
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”They are already struggling to survive, and this action will only serve to push them further into poverty and desperation.
”The FHA’s planned actions will not only cause immense suffering to the people affected but also be very damaging and capable of soiling the cherished reputation of the Nigerian government and the ruling party both on the local and international stage.
”We call on the FHA to put an immediate stop to these already tormenting plans and to begin negotiating in good faith with the affected people to ensure that they are properly compensated or resettled as promised from the beginning of the very processes and exercise.
”We demand that FHA act now with compassion and respect for the rights of the people that their thought-out plans are going to affect and that FHA must do everything within her power to make things right.
”It’s an aberration, in fact, an anathema for FHA to keep ignoring us. All we are only saying is that FHA should be morally right in their dealings with us.”