Abuja natives barricade National Assembly complex
• Protest Army’s evacuation order
Natives of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), yesterday, barricaded the main entrance to the National Assembly complex, protesting alleged evacuation notice handed to them by the Nigerian Army.
Their leader, Alhaji Jubrin Mamman, said the Army recently encroached on their lands at Tunga Maje, along the Gwagwalada-Abaji axis of the FCT, in spite of a court action restraining them from doing so. He added that the Army had also given them October 2016 as deadline to vacate the areas.
The protesters, who arrived the main gate of the Assembly as early as 8 a.m., held placards, expressing their grievance. They blocked the entrance to the complex, preventing movement of vehicles.
Attempt to force themselves into the complex and meet with the leadership of the Senate and House of Representatives was, however, resisted by security officers. The officers locked the entrance and directed lawmakers, staff and visitors to use the rear gate. The main gate was reopened at noon after the protesters had left.
“We will not be treated as strangers in our lands. We have been living at Tunga Maje, and its environs for years. We won’t let anyone, including the Nigerian Army, intimidate us out of our lands.
“We are appealing to the authorities of the Federal Capital Territory to call the Army to order and leave us alone. There is an existing court order restraining them from chasing us away from our lands but they are not obeying it. That is why we have come to express our grievances,” Mamman said, adding that the group had earlier petitioned the Attorney General of the Federation on the matter.
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