The Directorate of Road Transport Services (DRTS) under the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has initiated a comprehensive demolition on illegal structures, shops, and eateries within taxi ranks across Abuja, the capital city.
The targeted demolition commenced at Area 3 and Banex Junction Taxi Ranks on Friday, led by Mrs. Deborah Osho, the Head of Operations at DRTS. Supported by security agencies, the DRTS team dismantled unauthorized establishments such as car washes, mechanic workshops, cinema houses, and eateries operating within the ranks at Area 3 Taxi Rank. At Banex Junction Taxi Rank, the space, previously under the control of miscreants selling hard drugs, including adulterated fuel and diesel, faced similar measures.
Mrs. Osho clarified that the motive behind these actions was to create more space for taxis to operate within the designated ranks. This, she emphasized, aims to discourage the proliferation of illegal taxi parks throughout the city, addressing the challenge of insufficient space within the taxi ranks. Additionally, the initiative seeks to combat the activities of “one chance” operators who exploit illegal parks for illicit purposes.
Highlighting the state of some taxi ranks as criminal hideouts selling hard drugs, Mrs. Osho emphasized that the decision to demolish and clear illegal structures resulted from consultations with transport stakeholders. She revealed that a recent meeting with stakeholders led to the resolution to ensure a cleaner and more orderly environment in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Mrs. Osho stated, “We are prepared to clean all taxi ranks in 2024, to ensure that motorists board taxis inside the taxi ranks and not outside. This, in the long run, will address the menace of ‘one chance’ in the city.”
Dr. Peter Olumuji, the Secretary of the Command and Control Centre at the Department of Security Service, FCTA, supported the initiative, highlighting the correlation between secured taxi ranks and the reduction of “one chance” incidents. He underscored the need for additional personnel and vehicular assets for sustained operations, expressing confidence in the commitment of FCT Minister, Nyesom Wike, to provide the required resources for maintaining a clean and serene capital city.