The Original Inhabitants Development Association of Abuja (OIDA) has appealed to the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) Malam Muhammad Bello to reconsider the demolition policy of the administration and look into the plight of the original inhabitants of the territory who have been marginalised for a very long time.
One of the major stakeholders of OIDA, Simon Baba-Yerima, who spoke on behalf of the natives in a press briefing on the proposed massive demolition of illegal structures in Durumi and other communities by the FCTA, said they were supposed to be celebrated and honoured for being the most peaceful people, and not punished by endless demolitions.
Baba-Yerima further lamented that their local communities were tagged as criminal hideouts, while news on television has shown that most criminals reside in the urban communities with the habit of stealing billions of naira.
“The two ministers of FCT should try to respect the rule of law and the constitution of Nigeria, they should look into our matters, particularly the original inhabitants of Abuja. We are supposed to be celebrated and honoured of been the most peaceful people for hosting the seat of power.
“We have never fomented any violence, and have never carried dangerous weapons to challenge the government because we believe in peace and development. So, the mutual relationship should not be injured by the same authority which we have always protected. So, they should reconsider their policies and adjust.
“We are supposed to be living peacefully as a people as we are about to go through another democratic transition come May next year, but the administration is bringing demolition to destabilize the people. It is not right and should be strongly condemned,” he said.
Baba-Yerima, who is also the secretary of Kpaduma community, said if the FCTA s on demolishing illegal structures in Durumi community, the team should be guided when going there and that they should not just go without considering the rights of the entire citizens, most especially the original inhabitants of the community because it is their ancestral home.