By Longtong Ibrahim
Kaduna (Nigeria) – Eight weeks after the first demolition exercise carried out in Kaduna State (North-west Nigeria), Governor Nasir El-Rufai has commenced the second round exercise within the state metropolis.
He continued the exercise over the weekend, demolishing over 100 shops around the Printers Village – shops by Government Secondary School, Doka, Maiduguri Road (popularly Known as Obalande), Muri road, and Gwari Road, all in Kaduna North Local Government Area of the state.
When Africa Prime News visited those areas, demolition has already began; Shop owners were seen dismantling and moving out their properties – printing machines, zincs, doors, and fittings among others. Scavengers were also present at the site of the demolished buildings picking rods and other items for their own benefit.
Peter Seun, a shop owner while expressing dissatisfaction over the ongoing demolition, decried government apathy despite their pleas. He added that, after he received the notice in August, he was not been able to secure another place; stating that, the only option he has was to pack his printers and accessories at home, pending when he can pay for a new shop.
Seun pointed out that, “Taking the printer out cost me more than N10, 000 to hire a crane that could carry it. I have so many things on my head that I don’t know where to start from but I thanked God because all hopes are not lost; all my belongings are in place, because I was able to move them out before the demolition began.”
In the same vein, Moses Usman, a friend to one of the shop owners explained that, his friend owns a shop but could not come to see how the shops are been demolished, as such, he requested his assistance to dismantle the shop.
“Some of the shop owners I know, bought the shop space with large amount of money; I know of a woman who immediately after her wedding, her husband bought her a shop here costing about N1.3 million,” he noted.
It would be recalled that El-Rufai, through the Interim Chairman, Kaduna North Local government Area, Ahmed Kurfi in a letter dated 5th August, 2015 issued the occupants of the marked buildings/shops a two weeks quit notice.
El-Rufai commenced the demolition exercise in Zaria city, demolishing about 93 houses at the Alhudahuda College area.
Reasons for pulling down these structures according to government were to recover lands belonging to public institutions.