Vandalism: FCDA retrieves 700 stolen Abuja manhole covers
The Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA) has retrieved about 700 stolen manholes and gully covers from the court through the intervention of the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF).
The Executive Secretary of FCDA, Alhaji Shehu Ahmad, disclosed this on Thursday in Abuja, when he briefed newsmen on efforts of the authority to protect critical national infrastructure in the nation’s capital.
Ahmad said that the vandalisation of manhole and gully covers had become a source of concern to the FCT Administration, adding that the administration had intensified efforts toward addressing the situation.
He said that the FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Bello had made a declaration to the FCT Commandant of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC), to protect critical infrastructures such as manholes and gully covers, cables and street lights from vandals.
“We are in a like catch-22 situation. The manholes have been clearly stolen, criminals were arrested and the materials were taken and deposited with the NSCDC as exhibits because the issue is in court.
“For three to four years, we have been battling to retrieve them to government, not until last week we were able to break harder through the intervention of the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF).
“The AGF ordered the court to release those exhibits so that we can place some of them back because we have a larger chuck of them over 600 to 700 pieces but it will not do much by the time we collect them and start replacement on a stretch of road we need more than a thousand.
“When we collect them we can provide them for those areas that are a lit bit more secure. Even within this premises we can say we can replace some manhole covers with some confidence but outside this area, we cannot guarantee,” he said.
The executive secretary said that the FCT Administration was considering alternative covers that have less second-hand value and which would not be attractive to vandals.