FCTA demolishes structures at taxi parks in Abuja

THE Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) commenced the demolition of shops, eateries and other structures described as illegal within taxi parks across Abuja on Friday, January 12.

Officials of the Directorate of Road Transport Services (DRTS) pulled down some structures at Area 3 and Banex junction on Friday.

Head of Operations, DRTS Deborah Osho, who led the exercise, stated that it was aimed at creating more room for taxis within the parks.

“On Monday, the DRTS invited all the stakeholders in the transportation sector for a meeting, and one of the resolutions was to clear the taxi ranks for taxis to operate inside the ranks. We have equally handed over a space around Eagle Square for tax operators to use as a temporary taxi rank to stop the menace of illegal parks around the Federal Secretariat.

“We are prepared to clean all taxi ranks in 2024, to ensure that motorists board taxis inside the taxi ranks and not outside. This, in the long run, will address the menace of ‘one chance’ in the city,” she said.

The Command and Control Centre’s secretary, Department of Security, FCTA, Peter Olumuji, also said criminal gangs disguised as commercial transporters, popularly known as one-chance drivers, operate more easily due to inadequate taxi parks to board vehicles.

“Having gone around with DRTS officials, we noticed that most of the taxi ranks were occupied by people who were not meant to be there and not giving room to taxi owners to use the space.

“But as we clear these illegal structures, more vehicles will be coming into the ranks so that commuters will be able to board safe and secured taxis to their various destinations. This is a joint effort that will continue,” he said.



    On September 27, a viral video showed a resident of the city, Greatness Olufemi, by the roadside, where she was dumped after being pushed out of a vehicle by one-chance operators.

    Olufemi died of wounds sustained during the attack, and this sparked outrage amongst Nigerians.

    The ICIR reported that more residents of the FCT are likely to lose property and livelihood to demolition exercises in 2024.

    In December 2023, Osho disclosed that concerted efforts would be made to rid the city of illegal motor parks and motorcycle operators plying unapproved routes.

    Ijeoma Opara is a journalist with The ICIR. Reach her via [email protected] or @ije_le on Twitter.

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