14 January 2013

Nigeria: Armed Men Take Over Wuse As FCTA Begins Sanitation

Armed security men including men of the police and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) have taken over major roads leading to Wuse Market since Saturday, when the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) commenced a raid on hawkers and other illegal business operations around the market.

The raid, which covered the surroundings of the market and adjoining roads, was coordinated by the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB), who laid siege on the hawkers as early as 4am Saturday, and apprehended them as they attempted to ply their illegal trade in the area. Over 1000 hawkers were arrested during the raid, with their wares confiscated.

The sanitisation exercise which resulted in partial blockade of all the entry roads to the market created a traffic snarl when shoppers and traders began to resume for business at the market.

Speaking with journalists during the exercise, Director of AEPB, Mr. Isa Shuaibu, warned hawkers nursing plans of returning to the notorious area to disabuse their minds of such as the exercise would be sustained and violators arrested and prosecuted.

This was just as he warned banks and other business premises around the market against harbouring or allowing hawkers around their premises, saying the board would be constrained to seal any premises found to be encouraging hawking around its premises.

During the exercise, TOTAL service station, located along Herbert Macaulay Way near Berger Junction was sealed for environmental infractions, including harbouring unauthorised business activities within its premises such as production and sale of sachet water, hawking of used motor vehicle tyres and battery charging operators, just as fuel attendants at the service station were made to clean the premises which the AEPB described as filthy.

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