Concerns Raised as FCT Moves to Establish Motor Parks in Residential Estates
Residents residing in the serene residential estates of Karsana District, Abuja, find themselves gripped with apprehension as the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) greenlights plans to introduce motor parks within their vicinity.
Reports indicate that FCT Minister Nyesom Wike has given the green signal for the construction and operation of these motor parks, acting upon recommendations put forth by the FCT Transportation Secretariat. Under the terms of the contract awarded by the Secretariat, a private firm is slated to oversee the management of these motor parks for an initial period of five years, with provisions for renewal thereafter.
This move has sparked unease among residents, particularly those from prominent communities like Mab Global Estate and Queens Estate within Karsana District. They express deep-seated concerns over the potential security ramifications, asserting that the minister’s decision seemingly overlooks their safety concerns amidst his commitment to combatting insecurity in the FCT.
In interviews with the press, residents voiced fears that the introduction of motor parks could inadvertently attract criminal elements, including kidnappers, to their doorsteps. Citing recent incidents such as the high-profile kidnapping of a permanent secretary’s spouse in November 2023, where a hefty ransom was demanded, residents highlight the prevailing apprehension regarding the proposed motor parks’ impact on community safety.
Mr. James Adebayo, a landlord in the area, emphasized the widespread anxiety among residents, underscoring the perceived threat posed by the potential influx of criminals facilitated by the motor parks. He implored the minister to reconsider his decision and rescind the approval granted for the establishment of these motor parks.
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However, skepticism lingers among some residents regarding the legitimacy of the motor parks contract. Questions arise concerning the timing of the approval letter, dated May 25, 2023, just days before the conclusion of the former President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.
While the approval for the motor parks was initiated during the previous administration’s tenure, Minister Wike has since embraced and endorsed the project upon assuming office. In response to mounting opposition from affected estates, residents are mobilizing to petition the FCT minister in hopes of reversing the decision.
Amidst escalating tensions, the FCT Transportation Secretariat has convened a meeting with representatives from the estates to address concerns stemming from the approval of the motor parks. Scheduled for Tuesday, February 13, 2024, this meeting seeks to engage stakeholders and explore potential avenues for resolution.