Despite pendency of suit FCDA allegedly pulls down 50 shops for mechanics, traders

Abuja mechanics and furniture dealers have accused the management of the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA) of allegedly ignoring ongoing court processes by going ahead to demolish about 50 units of shops located at Kubwa Mechanic Village in Bwari Area Council Abuja.

In a suit marked, FCT/HC/CV/157/2018, the claimants numbering 288 have challenged the Minister of the Capital Territory, Federal Capital Development Authority, and Leon Energy Limited among others for illegally demolishing their structures.

In their statement of claim, the claimants who are mechanics, furniture dealers, and spare part dealers in Kubwa in Bwari Area council averred that they were allocated piece of land which they went ahead to develop in line with FCDA approved plans, but later notice encroachment on their property which they approached the court.

Their lawyer in a press briefing on Sunday said that while the case is pending in court, the FCDA went ahead to demolish the structures his client built and immediately relocated them to others who had already commenced building.

The claimants through their counsel, in a concurrent writ before the court is seeking a “declaration that the Claimants are and still remains the legal owners of the vast plots of land at kubwa mechanic village, said land having been allocated to the claimants by Mallam El-Rufai and captured in the TOP dated 30th June, 2005, designed by Wale Labiyi (Ag DD Development Control), recommended by J.A Kwashie (Director Development Control), forwarded by Engr. S. Alhassan (Executive Secretary Federal Capital Territory) and approved/Signed by the Honourable Minister Mallam El Rufai, same not having been validly revoked according to law.

“Declaration that the claimants are entitled to certificate occupancy in respect of the plots of lands allocated to them in so far the claimants are erecting their various buildings in accordance with the plans approved by the 15th and 29 Defendants.

“Declaration that the structures / fences being erected by the 5th defendants at a part of the kubwa mechanic village constitutes encroachment on the vast portion of land allocated to the claimants

“Declaration that the claimants are entitled to access road and/or rig of easement to and from the vast portion of land allocated to them by the minister of the federal capital territory for construction of the permanent site.

“An Order of injunction restraining the defendants, their agents, privil, employees and assigns from destroying, encroaching, trespassing pulling down or in any way whatsoever interrupting the claimants’ qui possession, control and ownership of the vast portion of land to the claimants for construction of their permanent site as artisans.

“An Order of injunction restraining the Defendants, its agents, privies, employees and assigns from destroying, pulling down or in any w whatsoever interrupting the Claimants’ possession control and owners of the shops and structure now being erected and built by the Claimant at Kubwa Mechanics Village and which were allocated variously to Claimants by the 1st and 2nd Defendants.

“An Order of injunction restraining the defendants, its agents, employ servants and privies from blocking the access road into the vast pool of land allocated to the claimants as mechanic village. ”

However, in their statement of defence, the 1st and 2nd defendants (Minister of FCT and FCDA) said the plot was leased to claimants for use and their contravening the terms of agreement led to the revocation.

Counsel to defendants, Uche Ofodile, added that the structures that were demolished were built without necessary approvals.

Meanwhile the matter has been fixed for January 30 by Justice F.E. Messiri who sits in Jabi FCT high court after the FCDA, who is 2nd defendant, has filed its defence.

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