The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), says it will collaborate with the National Boundary Commission to ensure that all its boundary areas encroached upon are recovered and protected against future abuse.
Cosmas Uzodinma, Chief Press Secretary made this known in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja.
The FCT Minister, Muhammad Musa Bello, while receiving a delegation from the commission said that the administration would work with the commission to carry out projects within reasonable costs.
He said that the administration would ensure that boundary areas around the FCT were demarcated with concrete pillars that would be visible to even laymen.
The minister noted that structures that were already sitting on the boundary areas around the territory would be removed and compensation paid to deserving affected developers.
He said that the high rate at which the population of the territory was growing had necessitated that steps must be taken to stop further encroachments.
Mr Bello said the FCTA had in the past unwittingly sited projects in parts of Kogi around the Abaji boundary areas, which was not part of the Abuja land mass.
He said that the Karshi Ara road that extends into Nasarawa State being done by the FCTA, as well as parts of the FCT that were already built up that were thought to be in Niger State.
Mr Bello commended the relationship between the FCTA and the commission, saying it had enabled the administration to have a clearer picture of the boundary.
He said the FCT boundary committee had been repositioned with the permanent secretary as the chairman, the director, survey and mapping as the secretary, while respected eminent personalities had also been included.
“All areas that are built up on the border will have to move; with dialogue we can make arrangement for compensations.
“The border has to be demarcated and it has to be something those that are not experts can see right through, there should be a buffer zone that differentiates the area; we need to do what the law says,” he said.
The Director-General of the Commission, Muhammad Ahmad, said that a joint meeting had been scheduled in a few days’ to review the status of the boundary and agree on a new roadmap.
He said this would address the challenges of encroachment and counter encroachments.
He advised the FCT Administration and Nasarawa government to stop granting development permits along the border corridor, pending the conclusion of work.
Mr Ahmad also charged the FCTA to undertake a comprehensive census of all the developments on the boundary line along the FCT/Nasarawa area in particular for proper records and necessary actions.
He said that this would make the boundary of the FCT and its neighbours more visible on the ground.
He said the affected border communities of the FCT and her neighbouring states should be encouraged to come together and discuss issues of cross broader cooperation to douse tensions and downplay the politics of boundary disputes.
Mr Ahmad also suggested a special funding for the placement of primary pillars across the boundary areas of the FCT, saying the normal funding of the commission cannot support that.