Plateau denies allegations of bias in demolition exercise

Plateau state on map
Plateau state on map

The Commissioner for Housing and Urban Development in the State denied the bias allegations.

The Plateau State Government on Monday denied allegations of bias in the on-going demolition of illegal structures within Jos and Bukuru areas of the state capital.

The Commissioner for Housing and Urban Development, Solomon Maren, made the denial in Jos.

He said that those making such allegations were not fair to the state government.

“The allegation is unfounded; it is false; it is not fair to government because government and its officials are under oath to be fair to all manner of people, and I don’t think anybody wants or would wish to jeopardise his eternity because he wants to pursue some earthly gains,” Mr. Maren said.

“If they have seen any development in whatever area you are referring to, and they have not seen in other area, it is just because they have not been going to the other areas, if they go they will see.

“In the last month of February, demolition was carried out on Ali Kazaure, which is a very old street in Jos that everybody knows. Demolition was carried out in Gangare and Dogon Karfe,” he added.

Mr. Maren said that the demolition exercise was not targeted at individuals, but is in fulfillment of the mandate of wiping out all illegal structures against the provision of the greater Jos plan.

The commissioner said that the greater Jos master plan, which is supposed to have been actualised in 2025, provided the city with a layout which must be followed without any deviation.

“We do not select people to demolish their structures, but we select structures that are not in conformity with the development plan of Plateau and those are the type of structures we go for demolition.

“When we see a building, we don’t know who owns it, and we don’t care who owns it so long as it conforms to developmental plan, we allow it, but if it does not, no matter who owns it, it would have to respect the laws of the land,” he said.

He said that the resistance was only natural as he had never heard anywhere in the world where development control had taken place without resistance by those that would be affected.

The commissioner called on the people of Plateau to support the redemption government of Governor Jang in its bid to make the State one of the most beautiful cities in the country, pointing out that ”every development would usually come with some difficulties”.

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