We’ll shut illegal car parks in FCT to tackle crime –Minister

The Minister, Federal Capital Territory, Mallam Muhammed Bello, has said the influx of too many vehicles has increased crime rate in Abuja and its environs.

He also said all illegal car parks would be closed in the FCT to tackle criminality and ensure the safety of residents and their property.

Bello said this during an advocacy visit to the Corps Marshal of the Federal Road Safety Corps, Dr Boboye Oyeyemi, on Friday in Abuja.

According to the News Agency of Nigeria, Bello also said the influx of too many vehicles in the FCT had frustrated the city plan for Abuja.

The minister said, “Criminality has increased just like vehicles have increased in the FCT. Therefore, all illegal motor parks will be closed to ensure safety.

“Designated areas for tricycles will be highly restricted. They will only be allowed in estates. They will be banned in Asokoro and the Life Camp.

“All these are in the law but they are not being implemented and we have to start implementing them. Advocacy will be carried out. With it, additional pedestrian bridges will be built.”

Also commenting on the increasing rate of crime in the FCT, the FRSC boss said colour-coding taxis would address the incidence of “one-chance robbery.”

While presenting a proposal titled, ‘Towards Improving Road Traffic Management in FCT,” Oyeyemi said the use of unpainted vehicles as taxis and the accompanying security risks were parts of the challenges facing road traffic management.

He said, “The FCT is one of the international gateways to the Federal Republic of Nigeria. As the capital city and seat of power, Abuja is host to foreign missions, international personalities and business interest.

“The political, economic and administrative activities are of strategic importance to the nation, which necessitates the influx of people with a relative increase in road traffic volume.

“The city is currently bedevilled by traffic congestion arising from non-compliance with road traffic regulations by some motorists as well as other road users.”

Oyeyemi said the FCT had overtaken Lagos and was now having the highest number of registered vehicles, adding that the FRSC would work to make Abuja a model city.

He said, “Part of the countermeasures is to engage the unions to paint their taxis in approved FCT colours and fix overhead lamps on their vehicles within one week.

“Also, the taxi unions will relocate to the approved designated motor parks within one week.”

The corps marshal said the success of the initiative could best be carried out with the right number of personnel and logistics support by other security agencies.

“If facilitated, the proposed plan of action, will not only make Abuja devoid of traffic indiscipline as currently prevalent but will also enhance the aesthetics of the city,” he said.