Hungry residents loot Abuja warehouse, vandalise facility


By Ukpono Ukpong

Residents of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) on Sunday looted a warehouse belonging the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA). They carted away foodstuff and other items stored in the warehouse.

According to eyewitnesses, hoodlums struck at warehouse when food items were being offloaded into the facility.

The FCTA confirmed the looting of the warehouse, located in Dei-Dei area. The looting of the warehouse was a symptom of the current economic hardship and hunger in the country.

Confirming the attack on the warehouse, an official of the FCTA, Zakari Aliyu, said the looters emptied the warehouse, removed roofs and windows and vandalised the building.

According to him, top officials of the FCTA would be visiting the warehouse on Monday to assess the extend of damage.

He said, “We visited the scene of the incident this morning. We visited with the Secretary and some other officials of the Secretariat. So, by tomorrow, the Secretary I think with the Minister of State will pay another visit to that place. I am sure that a lot of information that will be useful to you, you will get it. If you can just be patient, tomorrow you will get all the information you need. If you go there, there is nothing there. If you know that place, do you know that they removed the roof, and the windows inclusive, apart from the food items?”.

It was earlier reported by some news platform that the warehouse belonged to the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA).

But NEMA, in a statement signed by the head of its press unit, Manzo Ezekiel, denied the initial reports, saying the warehouse did not belong to the agency.

The statement added that NEMA’s Director-General, Mustapha Habib Ahmed, had instructed the strengthening of security at its zonal offices and warehouses nationwide, to forestall any security breach at NEMA facilities”.

“The attention of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has been drawn to media reports on Sunday alleging that the Agency’s warehouse was looted by some hoodlums in Abuja.

“This is to clarify that the looted warehouse does not belong to NEMA. However, the Agency sympathizes with the owners of the looted facility.

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“To forestall any security breach at NEMA facilities, Director General Mustapha Habib Ahmed has directed Zonal Directors and Heads of Operations to strengthen security in and around the Agency’s offices and warehouses nationwide,” the statement added.

Residents of the FCT had on Tuesday, February 27, joined other Nigerians in a street protest called by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) over the economic hardship and rising cost of living the the country.

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