By: Lawrence Bajah – Abuja
Natives of Kpaduma communities in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) have dragged the FCT Administration to court over the demolition of their houses, demanding the sum of N10 billion as compensation for damages and trauma the natives went through during the demolition exercise.
The counsel to Kpaduma communities, Sylvester Ogbelu, who spoke to Journalists after the court proceedings at FCT High Court at Life Camp in Abuja on Monday, said they were in court to challenge the demolition of the houses of Kpaduma, against pending court orders restraining the FCTA or any developers from taking any action against the communities.
“We are also challenging the FCTA for the torture, harassment, victimization, oppression, and the kind of hardship the people were put into in the course of the demolition. We have come to tell the court that the FCTA was wrong in demolishing their houses when there is a pending court order stopping them from demolishing.
“We are at present calling on the court to restrain the FCTA from further action for demolition and we are asking for N10bn compensation for the wrongful act they committed and the court has the jurisdiction and discretion to grant it,” he said.
The secretary of Kpaduma communities, Simon Baba-Yerimah, expressed confidence in the judiciary, saying that they believe that it is the last resort of the common man.
He said: “We have been threatened, marginalized, and harassed by the FCTA. We have experienced all kinds of abuse of our fundamental rights. Our houses were demolished in December last year when we were supposed to be celebrating Christmas and New Year, but rather we were in pain during the period.
“We trust that the court will give us justice and the compensation will be paid. We will also be asking for them to rebuild the houses that they demolished. Because we are natives of Abuja and not aliens.”
Also speaking, the spokesperson of Kpaduma communities, Hon. Bala Iyah, lamented that the FCTA does not consider the plight of natives of the FCT that the demolition of houses belonging to natives cannot happen in any other part of Nigeria, apart from the FCT.
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