Owners of about 500 houses in Emmanuel Estate along Airport Road in Abuja have accused the minister of the Federal Capital Territory,FCT and the administration of demolishing their homes so as to reallocate the land to powerful Nigerians.
The owners of the houses told an Abuja High Court that the estate was demolished illegally and for no just cause causing untold hardship and losses running into billions of naira just so that the land can be allocated to federal lawmakers and other government officials.
At the resumed hearing of the suit filed by the home owners, their lawyer Chris Uche, invited the court to visit the demolished site after arguing over the survey map submitted by the town planners who admitted not visiting the site before, during and after the demolition.
The trial judge, Justice Danlami Senchi after listening to arguments and counter arguments adjourned the suit to Monday 1st July to enable parties in the matter visit the demolished site before fixing a judgment date.
The development control department of the Federal Capital Development Authority had embarked on the demolition of several estates, including Emmanuel Estate, early this year claiming that it did not have proper building approvals.
Spokesman of the department, Josephine Mudashiru said, “These structures do not have valid land documents or building plan approval. Announcements were made last year warning people not to patronize these fraudsters and at that time the estate had not been developed”.
However, the home owners in the estate insist that they saw FCTland approval documents on the land before they bought their houses. They claimed that they were told that the approval was revoked and that it had been given to members of the National Assembly for a new legislative quarters project.