Many sex workers and shop owners were stranded as the Federal Capital Territory Administration demolished four brothels and shops at a notorious area of Jabi, Abuja, on Thursday.
The buildings which were said to have no approvals were pulled down by bulldozers accompanied by officials of the Development Control Department of the FCT Administration and armed policemen.
The owners and occupants of the structures were accused of ignoring several demolition notices asking them to vacate the buildings.
But the residents claimed they were not given adequate notice before the exercise.
A resident, Joseph Ola said, “They didn’t give us notice, they demolished our houses, and I don’t know why our political leaders are not here.”
A food seller identified as Mrs Godwin, stated, “They (FCT officials) informed us that they would come but nobody believed. They were supposed to carry out the demolition on Wednesday but we did not see them.
” I pity the shop owners and the ashewos (sex hawkers) because this exercise would affect them terribly.”
Addressing journalists, Director of Development Control Department, Muktar Galadinma, said the Administration had held meetings with the residents and marked the affected structures before the exercise.
“My advice is that they should not build any commercial structure along this corridor because this is supposed to be an indigenous community but the proliferation of commercial activities are attracting men of the underworld and even making the environment dirty,” he noted.
Also speaking, the FCT Director of Security, Adamu Gwary, said the proliferation of shanties in the community had made it a haven for criminals, hence the demolition.