Vanguard reports that the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has clamped down on “one-chance” syndicates, operating in unapproved parking zones within the capital city, Abuja.
Mr Peter Olumuji, the Secretary, Command and Control Centre of the Taskforce, established to enforce sanity in the city, explained on Wednesday in Abuja that the raid was to keep the city safe.
The team comprised personnel of the Nigerian Police, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Department of State Security, Immigration Service, Nigerian Correctional Service and the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency.
Others are drawn from the Directorate of Road Traffic Service (DRTS), Abuja Environmental Protection Board, Social Development Secretariat and other relevant agencies in the FCT.
Olumuji explained during the raid that the one chance syndicates use unpainted taxis in unapproved motor parks to lure unsuspected residents, seize their valuables and drop them along the way or even kill their victims.
He added that beggers and other individuals causing nuisance around Bannex junction and other parts of the city were also dislodged.
He said that the hideout of suspected miscreants known for attacking unsuspecting residents in the area, mostly at night, were also dislodged.
The secretary further said that about 15 vehicles were also impounded around Bannex Junction, Federal Secretariat, and environs for various traffic violations.
According to him, the raid is part of a holistic operation to ensure the safety and free movement of residents within the city without being harassed or attacked by miscreants.
“We have been receiving reports about the operation of one chance in some locations in the city.
“The enforcement team is all out to ensure that we raid any location that harbours one chance motorists, illegal motor parks or unapproved parking spaces.
“We have also realised that besides causing public nuisance, some of the beggars are being used to gather information for criminals.”
The Deputy Director, Operations, DRTS, Mrs Deborah Osho, disclosed that the 15 vehicles impounded included rickety vehicles that were not supposed to be on the road.
According to her, most of the illegal parks constitute serious traffic obstructions in the city, with the operators occupying major road corridors, including pedestrian walkways.
“The development is creating unacceptable traffic congestion in some of the locations.
“Yesterday (Tuesday), we sensitised commercial drivers to always use designated taxi parks within the city.
“Today, they are all out in different road corridors, establishing illegal parks and obstructing traffic.
“We will keep clamping down and seizing their vehicles until they learn to do the right thing,” said Osho.