By Stanley Onyekwere
Some suspected hoodlums yesterday attacked members of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) Taskforce during a special cleanup operation, at Kuchingoro community, in Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC) of the Territory.
While most members of the Taskforce escaped death, 5 officers were not lucky, as they sustained various degrees of injury, after the Hoodlums attacked them with stones, cutlasses and other dangerous weapons.
However, 10 suspects were arrested and handed over to the police for investigation and prosecution.
Our correspondent reports that Taskforce was in the community, in continuation of its ongoing massive clean up and the clampdown on Okada riders violating traffic rules along the Lugbe-Airport road axis.
Senior Special Assistant on Monitoring, Inspection and Enforcement to FCT Minister, Ikharo Attah, who was among the officers who escaped unhurt, said the hoodlums apparently were angered that the shanties and illegal structures housing them under electrical high tension installations were being removed.
Attah reiterated that the Taskforce will not be deterred by the serial attacks by people who are opposed to the enforcement of orders and regulations needed to make Abuja a model City.
According to him, while lawless people remain defiant to orders and policies of government, the enforcement team will also remain committed to its mandate.
He said, “ We came here to remove illegal structures that are painted Airport road in bad light, we were clearing the roadsides of traders, Okada riders, all of a sudden, some hoodlums appeared and started throwing stones.
“We were able to push them back, because we have to clean up the roads. Unfortunately, about 5 of our personnel sustainable various degrees of injury from the stones that hut them.
“We also learnt that the leader of the mob was also hit by the stone of his own group, we have taken him to the hospital. We arrested about 10 persons suspected to have participated in the attack.
“We are not deterred, the Airport road must be cleaned. So many of the structures were built under high tension wire, and we are pushing Okada riders and taxi drivers back to the community”, he added.
Also speaking, the Islamic cleric of Kuchingoro Community, Imam Usman Yahaya, who was also caught up in the attack, condemned the actions of the hoodlums, saying he supported the removal of the illegal structures and fight against criminalities in the area.
Yahaya who claimed he has lived in the community for over 20 years, noted that the actions of the hoodlums has brought a bad image to the place.
He pledged to support the Taskforce in fishing out all criminal elements and those who jeopardize government’s developmental efforts.