As the wave of kidnapping, armed robbery and killings escalates in the nation’s capital, residents have cried out over the approval granted by the Federal Capital Territory Administration’s for the establishment and operation of motorparks within residential estates by the FCT.
Although the FCT Minister, Mr. Nyesom Wike, has vowed to rid Abuja of criminals, particularly, kidnappers and armed robbers, it is unclear why he also approved the operation of motorparks within housing estates.
Residents of two estates in Karsana District adjoining Gwarinpa, who were greeted with a notice for a motor park to be built and operated within their domain, immediately expressed shock and disappointment over the approval, saying that the FCT was insensitive to their safety and wellbeing.
One of the motorparks is to be established between Mabglobal Estate and Queens Estate near the Public Service Institute on the AYA-Kubwa road.
The approval for the establishment and running of the motor park was given by the FCT Transportation Secretariat, which is overseen by the office of the FCT Minister.
The motor park contract, which was awarded to a private firm known as Fasaba and Sons Limited, was signed by the Secretary of the Transportation Secretariat, Abdullahi Adamu Candido, and is for initial period of five years, subject to renewal.
The award letter dated May 25, 2023, however raises suspicion over the genuineness of the deal as the contract appears to have been initiated four days before President Bola Ahmed Tinubu administration was inaugurated on May 29, 2023.
Part of the motor park contract letter addressed to the managing director of Fasaba and Sons Limited reads: “I am pleased to inform you that approval has been given to your company for the engagement as manager of temporary off-street parking at Karsana East by Mabglobal, Queens Estates, FCT, Abuja, for a period of five years.
Your engagement as a manager for the period stated above is subject to renewal at the discretion of the Secretary, Transportation Secretariat. The structures to be erected at the park shall be as approved by the Federal Capital Territory Administration, FCTA.
“This engagement is subject strictly to the attached conditions. Congratulations,” the letter signed by Abdullahi Adamu Candido, stated.
Residents of the affected estates have however rejected the planned motor park within their corridor, describing the approval by the FCTA for the project at this time as an act of insensitivity and reckless pursuit of pecuniary benefits over the safety of lives and property of the residents.
They vowed to take the matter to the FCT Minister, Nyesom Wike, whom they believe, would never be a party to such a project that has the potential to jeopardise the security of the affected estates and its environs.
“We must take this matter up urgently with the FCT Minister. Wike that we know, cannot promised to confront criminality and insecurity in one hand and then go on to approve motorparks within residential estates,” a resident of Queens Estate told Vanguard on Monday.
However, in order to persuade the residents of the estates to accept the motorparks in good faith and cooperate with the private contractor who has been awarded the construction and management, the FCT Transportation Secretariat has summoned their leaders to a crucial meeting to be held at 2pm on Tuesday.
One of the invitation letters sent to one of the estate presidents and sighted by Vanguard on Monday, reads: “Good morning sir. This is to invite you to a meeting scheduled to be held on 13/2/24 at the office of the Director of the management Department, FCT Transportation Secretariat Area 11 by 2pm for deliberation on the Transit way matters”.
It was signed by Engineer Usman on behalf of the Director of Traffic Management in the FCTA.
Vanguard gathered that based on the protests against the move by the FCTA, many residents of various estates where such motor parks are being planned, have decided to swarm the Transport secretariat on Tuesday to express their anger and disapproval over the project.