“We cannot allow cows in Abuja” ― Minister of FCT, Wike vows
By Jennifer S. Kuwanta
The newly sworn-in Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Nyesom Wike has vowed to end open grazing in Abuja, saying that the federal government can no longer allow cows to be parading in the city.
The former governor of Rivers state while speaking in a press conference in Abuja on Monday, hours after his swearing-in stated that his ministry will consult with herdsmen to see how they will stop open grazing in Abuja, noting that the grasses in the city were planted to beautify and not to feed cows.
“We will consult with the herdsmen to see how we will stop [open grazing] because we cannot allow cows inside the city. They can be outside the city because the grasses are outside the city. The grasses in the city were planted to beautify the city. It is not the one that they would eat.
“So, we will discuss. It is important. Let us say it, you are driving inside the [Presidential] Villa for example, and you see about 20,000 to 40,000 goats, if foreigners see that, how would they feel?”
GistReel reports that Wike assumed office on Monday and also declared that all illegal structures obstructing the building plans in the city will be removed.
Sending warnings to land allottees who have been given Certificates of Occupancy but failed to develop, Wike stated that such people would lose their lands to give way to those ready to build.
Wike said: “Abuja has turned into a slum city. Sanitation is bad with refuse everywhere. We cannot allow that, we will look at issues of waste disposal.
“If you build on a green area, sorry, it will go down. Those who were allocated land and refused to develop them, we will revoke such lands and re-allocate them to those who are ready to develop them. Those who don’t pay ground rent, we will not notify them to do so, but I will not be tired of signing revocation notices.
“Uncompleted buildings that have become a safe haven for criminals will be reclaimed by the government and put them to good use. Land racketeering days are over. Those who refuse to develop, turning to land speculators will lose their lands.”
“We will consult with stakeholders, the natives, and herdsmen to address some of these problems, including open grazing.
“We will provide alternatives to reduce the suffering of the people, particularly those without private vehicles.
“We will bring back mass transit to improve access to public transportation, and therefore, the person in charge of transportation must keep his records clean.
“We will provide security agencies with necessary tools and logistics and after that, we will not want to hear any excuses. What we want to see is results.”