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Insecurity: FCTA re-strategise to forestall repeat of Kuje jailbreak

By Ben Adoga
The story of the terrorists’ attack on the Kuje Medium Correctional Centre remains a nightmare to the entire nation and a huge burden to the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration, which is still grappling with how to curtail the menace of the unscrupulous elements who have declared war against the Nigerian state.

Without any iota of doubt, it is the responsibility of the Federal Government to provide security for these facilities across the nation, but it appears that the FG had been overwhelmed thus suggesting that the government needs help from other tiers of government.

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In a bid to complement the effort of the Federal Government, the FCT administration devised strategies to combat the menace of these unscrupulous elements in the Federal Capital Territory and its environs.

The authority took the bold step by calling a stakeholders’ meeting to discuss insecurity, especially in Kuje Area Council.

Following their resolutions at the engagement, the traditional rulers have endorsed the planned demolition of places that constitute a security threat in the area.

The engagement between the FCT Administration and Kuje traditional rulers which was held Friday endorsed the planned demolition of illegal structures and a massive clean-up in Kuje town by the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA).

The Gomo of Kuje, HRH Alhaji Haruna Jibrin said he has given his support and blessings to the planned clean-up exercise because he believes and hopes it would restore sanity and most importantly security to the town.

He noted that he has always interacted with different segments of the society in Kuje to maintain peace and order and had been looking forward to more collaborative efforts from all government agencies.

It is widely believed that criminal activities are easily executed when criminal elements have favourable environments to fester like slums, uncompleted buildings, and other meeting points.

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The Kuje jailbreak was perhaps made easy by contacts and planning from such areas.

The Principal Secretary to Kuje Area Council, Abdullahi Sabo, who represented the council’s Chairman, Abdullahi Sabo, disclosed that the council officials have endorsed the coming of the bulldozers, but pleaded that more time should be given to allow residents to salvage their properties.

Senior Special Assistant to FCT Minister on Monitoring, Inspection, and Enforcement, Ikharo Attah, who convened the meeting on behalf of the FCT Administration warned that after a one-week ultimatum, the steaming bulldozers may not be restrained.

He stated that FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Bello who visited the Kuje town recently had expressed angst over the deterioration of both environmental infrastructures and security in the area.

He disclosed that the Minister authorised the massive clean-up to restore order and sanity and as well remove all illegal shelters that provide criminal elements covers.

Attah urged all the stakeholders, to maximally use the one week to move out from all the illegal places to avoid unnecessary losses, as nothing would stop the clean-up exercise.

He said, “Everyone, the royal fathers, area council chairman, and traders have all agreed that all contraventions to the Urban and Regional Planning Acts, AEPB Acts must be cleared.

“The overflow from Kuje market must be taken to the two new markets close by. Those selling perishable items like raw food and vegetables will be taken to the farmers’ market, we are saying it in strong terms.

“Based on the urgency of the matter the Kuje Area Council authorities will engage the stakeholders and tell everyone to clear in one week. So that we have a better Kuje and everyone will be happy that Kuje is safe again and completely cleared.”

However, it was reasoned that this should be the way to go, not only in the FCT but in all states. Criminal hideouts, forests, and other dens and breeding as well as gathering spots for criminals, kidnappers, bandits, and other terrorist groups should be combed and if possible, routed out as a measure of curbing these violent crimes all around the country.

In this case, all state governments and local governments should, as a matter of urgency key into this strategy as leaving security matters to the federal government alone has not helped.

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