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General News of Monday, 27 December 2021


FCT issues quit notice to illegal hoteliers

Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA)

Following a call for an intervention by the Home Owners Association of an Abuja-based Mab Global Estate, over the increasing surge of illegal hotels in the estate, the Development Control of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has given the hotels seven days to quit.

According to feelers, the Director in charge of Development Control of the FCT Administration, Garba Kwamkur, was informed of the violation of the original plan by some home owners who converted their houses to hotels.

Findings revealed that three of the hotels are fully operational, while two are still at various stages of completion.

Worried by the development, home owners of the estate of 634 houses in Gwarimpa, Karsana District, said they were living in fear over the diversion of the residential homes in the estate to brothels and hotels.

The operators of the hotel, it was gathered, have not secured any approval from the regulatory authorities in Abuja, the development control, to convert the houses in the gated estate to commercial use.

“With three hotels in operation, all manners of guests with questionable characters, criminals, drug pedlars now see the estate as a safe haven. To the consternation of the landlords of the estate, the hotel guests move in and out at odd hours and expose the entire community to danger.

“Three weeks ago, there was a breakdown of law and order in the estate as two groups engaged each other at the hotel located at Plot 400 and the fight spread to the gate into the night.

“To add to the misery of the agitated community, a person procured a container and positioned it in front of the building plaza to deface the estate,” a resident said.

Worried by the turn of events, the Homeowners Association held its annual general meeting to deliberate on the threat posed by the illegal hotels and container in the estate.

The estate through its leaders, wrote Development Control on Sunday, November 21, 2021 and the regulatory body acknowledged receipt of the letter on Wednesday, December 1, 2021. No action was taken on the letter until a publication by national newspaper which was also carried by online platforms.

The letter entitled: The change of original purpose, signed by Ahmed Ihedioha and Charles Kuffre, president and secretary reads: “This is to bring to your notice, the following: Plots 400 Main Street, 193 Diamond Street,  and 289 Rosemund Street which were originally meant for residential purposes have been changed and operated as hotels in the estate; Plot 252 and 253 Professor Emeribe Street are insinuated to be hotels in the making; Indiscriminate positioning of a container at the plaza which has a potential danger of causing traffic and defacing the estate.”

“These infractions are detrimental, and have distorted the original plan of the estate and have constituted a nuisance to the inhabitants.

“We call on you to move in and restore order in the estate by reverting those buildings to their original purpose which is residential; To stop plots from being developed into hotels; Stop the owner of the container from operating and compel same to be removed.”

The hotel owners are quoted as saying they have the support of some allies in development control in spite of the fact that the agency allegedly refused to grant approval to convert the houses to hotels since the estate is a gated community.

The decision of the Director of Development Control to visit and issue quit notice on them shows that the director is not involved in any deal with the illegal hotels.

However, the homeowners are optimistic that the development control will live up to its expectations to do the right thing and wrest control of Abuja estates from desperate opportunistic business men with no regard for the position of the law.

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