Residents Protest Demolition of Houses in Abuja
Vanguard, 19 June 2014
Abuja—Protest erupted in Abuja Model City, Adkan Estate, Gwarinpa II and Galadima on Thursday following alleged demolition of houses in Lungu, a settlement in the estate.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that 6th Avenue, the major road to the estate and the main gate, were blocked by the protesters making it impossible for motorists to enter or leave the estate.
This resulted in a gridlock in the estate, spilling over to the Kubwa expressway as tyres were burnt in the gate.
Some women carried placards with inscriptions such as: “we are tired of demolition’’; “FCT Minister, please come and help us’’; “Stop this demolition.
A resident, who pleaded anonymity, told NAN that the riot was a reaction to the demolition that took place in Lungu.
She said that during the demolition, a house collapsed and killed a two-month old baby.
“The baby died and the mother, who could not bear it, stabbed herself and died’’, she said.
During the protest, an alert was sent out to residents warning them against movement in and out of the affected areas.
At the time of this report, the Police and FCDA were yet to issue any official statement on the matter. (NAN)
Mother Stabs Herself to Death after Watching Her Son Die during the Lungu Abuja Demolition
Whisper Nigeria, 20 June 2014
Entrance into Abuja yesterday was shut down and pandemonium took over on the popular Kubwa-Zuba expressway after a woman and her son tragically lost their lives during the demolition of Aluguyi Village, popularly known as Lungu Village in the FCT.
According to angry natives, some Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA) officials, in the company of well-armed military personnel, had stormed their community at about 10am and started demolishing houses along with their belongings, not minding if people were inside or not. A demolition they said was unannounced and totally inhumane.
An eyewitness, Mr. Joshua Iyah, told reporters:
“During the demolition, a primary school boy came home from school tired and hungry, not understanding what was going on, he entered their house to change from his school uniform and as he was still inside the house, that was when the bulldozer demolishing
their house and blocks fell on the boy.
Attempts to rescue the boy were not successful because the military and policemen were using whips against us. They even prevented his mother from rescuing him. The boy died immediately. When the mother of the boy saw what happened to her child, she took a broken bottle and stabbed herself to death.”
The woman’s death sparked an outrage and the angry natives started a protest, at about 12 noon. They barricaded the expressway with burning tyres and bricks. JethroIliya, another eye witness said that they initially started the protest inside Gwarinpa estate, but when there was no response from the FCT minister, Sen. Bala Mohammed or relevant authorities, they decided to move to Kubwa-Zuba expressway to express their grievances. He said:
“To make matters worse the policemen shot two people, when we were protesting over the two people shot, the military men started shooting again in the air. As I speak to you, two people are dead and two are currently in the hospital.
What wrong have we done as natives of Abuja to have given our land to the federal government? We have given enough! They have collected our farmlands, we were quiet, now they are coming to chase us out of our houses. We have so many graduates everywhere, but no job, yet they will say we are not educated.
Enough is enough, we have been pushed to the wall. This is just the beginning, we cannot take this anymore! Was it a crime for us to have given our land to Nigeria? This is too much, we are not animals. They should do the right thing in Abuja, before it is too late,” he said.
Photos: Whisper Nigeria