Land Use Contravention: FCTA Seals Popular Zodara Bar
The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), on Thursday, sealed off a popular pub and event centre, Zodara Bar, on No. 2 Bujumbura Street at Wuse II in Abuja metropolis.
The operation was carried out by the FCTA Multi Departmental headed by the Abuja Metropolitan Management Council (AMMC).
Addressing newsmen shortly after sealing the property, the Coordinator of AMMC, Shuaibu Umar, explained that the operation became necessary, following a court order which indicates a change of land use and illegal activities constituting nuisance that disturbs the public peace.
“First and foremost, the property that is in use now is constituting a general environmental nuisance to the whole of the neighbourhood. The whole of the area is disturbed by the activities going on in this building.
“As you can see it is a multi-departmental operation headed by the Abuja Metropolitan Management Council (AMMC). All departments are involved namely, Park and Recreations, Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB), Department of Development Control, and Enforcement Team from the office of the FCT Minister.
“We received so many complaints from whatever activities that are happening here and we followed all necessary processes. We went to court and obtained a seal-off order. Whatever we are doing here is enforcing what the court has directed,” Umar said.
He emphasised the need for the owners of property to always ensure compliance with the land use of the area, adding that they must comply with the environmental and all necessary guidelines that were governing operations either residential, commercial or recreational in the FCT.
“Whatever we do here is that we must not allow and we are not allowing any impunity to take place in the FCT.
“We have so many complaints and we gave many notices to the occupant of this property yet they proved to be very recalcitrant.
“And we have taken the necessary steps in order to sure that we rid this neighbourhood of any nuisance that is emanating from this place,” he said.
On his part, the director of AEPB, Eng. Osi Braimah, stated that the FCT was a creation of law, adding that all activities in the city were guided by law.
“If you are going to build a property you must get approval from the Department of Development Control, if you want to change your land use you must get approval.
“Also the noise level in the FCT is controlled. So clubs, gardens and all that must comply with the noise requirements.
“This is why we are forced to close this property because people living around this area can no longer sleep or rest because of the activities going on in this building,” he said.
Also, the director, the department of development control, Malam Muktar Galadima, said all development in the FCT is guided by the Abuja Master Plan.
“This plot in question was designed and approved for residential purpose but they have converted the land use not only the conversion that matters but also it has become a nuisance to the environment.”
Contributing, Mr Ikharo Attah, Senior Special Assistant on Monitoring, Inspection and Enforcement to the FCT Minister, said that the minister insisted that all the illegality happening around the area must stop.
“If you look at the parking alone here is very disturbing and painful. But the beauty of it all and what we will be taken home from here is the fact that FCT agencies under AMMC are driving home a very strong message that you don’t abuse and rape the Urban and Regional Planning Law and AEPB Act and go free,” Attah said.